The Jam 411

Perhaps the very easiest thing to can is homemade jam.  It’s not very expensive, it’s simple, and once you’ve made one kind of jam, others just cooperatively fall into place for you.

The instructions for basic jams are all pretty much the same – you only need to make minor modifications for different fruits.  So, because we’re all creative people, I’m laying out the basic how-to, giving you a chart with special instructions fruit by fruit, and you can take it from there.  

Ingredients


  • 8 cups of fresh or frozen fruit
  • 1 packet of pectin + ¼ of a package (I like to use the no-sugar-needed, but then still add sugar – just less!)
  • 4 cups of sugar

1.      Prep your fruit by washing it and cutting it up if necessary. 

2.     Smush your fruit.  You can do this with a potato masher, food processer, blender or food mill.  For some fruits I like to puree them and have a smoother jam and for others I like chunkier jam – it’s up to personal preference.  

J  a small bowl, use a fork to mix ¼ cup of the sugar with one packet of pectin.

4.     In a saucepan, stir the fruit, lemon juice and pectin together well.

5.     Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat, stirring frequently.

6.    Once it is boiling, stir in the sugar and return to a boil for one minute.


7.     This is important:

Jam Making Rule of Law: 

Always test your jam!!!!  

How? 

You do this by keeping a spoon in the freezer – to test, drip a bit of the hot jam into the spoon to allow it to quick cool – the consistency it reaches is the consistency your finished product will be.  At this point, I nearly always end up adding another 1/4 – 1/2 package of pectin – I use the cheaper pectin to “top it up” – return to a simmer for a couple of minutes and test again.   Omitting this step may result in a very tasty ice cream topping or waffle syrup, but not jam!


8.  Ladle the jam carefully into your awaiting (sanitized) jars, wipe the rim and cap your jars with snap lids and rings.

9.     Process in a water bath canner, according to the ingredients chart and making adjustments for your altitude.

FRUIT
SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS
PROCESSING TIME
Apricot
Peel, slice in half to pit
5 minutes
Blackberry
optional step: mill to remove seeds
10 minutes
Blueberry
optional step: puree
7 minutes
Cherry
Pit with a cherry pitter, chop before cooking
10 minutes
Grape
Mill to remove seeds
10 minutes
Huckleberry
Check for stems
10 minutes
Peach
Peel, slice in half to remove pits
10 minutes
Plum
Slice in half to remove pits
5 minutes
Raspberry
Crush with a potato masher
10 minutes
Strawberry
Remove cores, mash with a potato masher
10 minutes
 

Daisy Luther

Please feel free to share any information from this site in part or in full, leaving all links intact, giving credit to the author and including a link to this website and the following bio. Daisy Luther is a single mom who lives in a small village in the mountains of Northern California, where she homeschools her youngest daughter and raises veggies, chickens, and a motley assortment of dogs and cats.   She is a best-selling author who has written several books, including The Organic Canner,  The Pantry Primer: A Prepper's Guide to Whole Food on a Half-Price Budget, and The Prepper's Water Survival Guide: Harvest, Treat, and Store Your Most Vital Resource.  Daisy is a prolific blogger who has been widely republished throughout alternative media. On her website, The Organic Prepper, Daisy uses her background in alternative journalism to provide a unique perspective on health, self-reliance, personal liberty, and preparedness. You can follow her on Facebook, Pinterest,  and Twitter,.

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