Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Freezer Jams

I made strawberry jam this afternoon!

The blueberries getting a good mash and then being mixed with the sugar and pectin.

My sister asked if I made freezer jams, which is another wonderful option if you're not into canning. I hadn't made any before, though I've been the beneficiary of many a wonderful freezer jam at Thanksgiving, when my husband's grandmother brings her strawberry jam to go with the rolls. Delightful!

But I specifically went out and bought a fast-acting pectin to try my hand at freezer jam (blueberry).

Ball is just one brand of pectin...there are many out there.

It was quite easy, and I'm ready to try some more this weekend with strawberries. Please note, you will not get the deep rich taste that you get from cooked jam, however, you get lovely fruity notes and if you decrease the amount of sugar to your liking, you'll end up tasting more fruit than sugar (always a bonus in my book).

So, here's how it goes.

Freezer Jam
1 & 2/3 cup prepared Fruit of your choice (strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, peaches, pears or cherries)
2/3 cup sugar (I reduced to 1/2 cup)
2 tbs Ball Real Fruit Instant Pectin
If using peaches, 1 tbs bottled lemon juice

**Note: Measure you fruit once it's been prepared (i.e., crushed or chopped), not before.

To prepare fruit:
Strawberry: Hull and crush one layer at a time using a potato masher
Peaches or pears: Peel and pit. Finely chop.
Other Berries: Crush one layer at a time using a potato masher
Cherries: Remove stems and pits. Finely chop.

1. Stir sugar and pectin in a bowl.

2. Add fruit. Stir for 3 minutes. (Set a timer - do the full three minutes.)

3. Ladle jam into clean freezer jars and let stand 30 minutes. **If you plan on freezing, rather than refrigerating and using within 3 weeks, make sure you leave at least 1/2-inch headspace, as the fruit will expand in the freezer.** Enjoy or put in your freezer.

*Will last in freezer for up to a year.
* Will last in the fridge for up to 3 weeks.

That's it! So easy!

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