honey strawberry jam

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I realize January is not usually a canning time but my pb&j loving husband has gone through all our strawberry jam I canned so I had no choice! I really love this jam, using honey instead of white sugar, the strawberry flavor is really fantastic and it’s not overly sweet like most jams. Canning is not tough but there is a process that must be done to get the correct results. Before you start make sure you read through the recipe and have all your ingredients and supplies ready to go. Once you’ve canned a few times you get the hang of it and it is really fun!

I’ll be sharing some yummy whole wheat bread soon that would go perfectly with this jam so be looking for that!!

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Here are some helpful canning sites:

Canning 101 by The Pioneer Woman

USDA Preparing and Canning Jams and Jellies

Canning 101 by Simplebites.net

Strawberry Honey Jam

recipe slightly adapted from simplebites.net

Ingredients:

6 cups chopped strawberries

2 (1.75 oz.) boxes powdered pectin

1 1/2 cups honey

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 tablespoon pure vanilla

Directions:

To start, wash and sterilize six half pint jam jars. Boil the flat parts of the lids in a small pot and keep at a low simmer until ready to be used. Also, in the pot you’ll be putting your jars in for the final step, place your empty jars and fill with water to cover jars and let simmer until you’re ready to fill them. This is just simply warming the jars so they’ll be ready for the hot jam.

Mash the berries to desired consistency with a potato masher and place in a large heavy bottomed saucepan.

Add the pectin, stir with a wooden spoon, and place on a burner over high heat and bring to a rolling boil. Stir and boil for 1 min. Careful here, it can splatter quite a bit!

Remove from heat and add the honey, lemon juice and vanilla and mix well. Return to heat and bring to a boil again, stirring occasionally. Boil for 5 min, stirring constantly.

Remove jam from heat and let sit for a couple of minutes. Ladle jam into hot jars, then place a flat lid on jars, and add screw rings.

Immerse jars in hot water bath, and boil rapidly for 8 min. Remove from bath and place on a towel on the counter to cool.

This is when you’ll start hearing little pops! If so, you’re good to go! If not just put any unsealed jars in the fridge and eat right away. πŸ™‚ Another way to check to make sure the jam has sealed properly is to lightly press in the center after a few hours on the counter, if there’s no give then they are ready to be put away.

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cherry blackberry jam

This summer I got a jam making kick. I had never done it before but really wanted to try and once I got the hang of it, I made jam for 3 days straight! I feel like that third day was the best batch. I really like whole pieces of fruit in my jam but found out with the first few batches after the fruit was smashed then cooked for so long there were hardly any pieces left. So in this cherry blackberry version I didn’t smash the berries at all and I really liked the consistency. Canning isn’t really hard but it does call for a very precise method of cooking. If the process is done correctly jams can be good for up to a year! I followed Pioneer Womans instructions, I thought they were the most clear of all the jam recipes I saw. I didn’t buy all of the canning tools, just the wide mouth funnel. I used things I had for the rest of the process and things turned out fine for me. Of course, you can get the large pot, the rack, the tongs, but I was ok with regular tongs, my large stockpot and I actually put the jars straight in the pot, not on the rack. Whatever works for you! Try it someday! Having your own jam on hand is great for you and the fam and a great gift whenever you need one!

Ingredients:

recipe adapted from thepioneerwoman.com

5 cups blackberries

1 cup bing cherries, pits removed

6 cups sugar

4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 49g package powdered fruit pectin

Preparation:

1. Place 8 or 9 8-ounce mason jars in a large hot water bath canner (or pot). Cover with water and bring to a simmer.
2. Simmer center lids in separate saucepan full of water.
3. Place blackberries,cherries and lemon juice in a separate pot. Stir in pectin until dissolved. Bring blackberries and cherries to a strong boil.
4. Add sugar (measure beforehand so you can add it all at once), then return mixture to a full (violent) boil that can’t be stirred down. Boil hard for 1 minute 15 seconds.
5. Skim foam off the top.
6. Remove one jar at a time from the simmering water. Pour water back into the pot. Using a wide-mouth funnel, fill each jar with jam, being careful to keep the liquid/fruit ratio consistent. Fill jars so that they have 1/4-inch of space at the top.
7. Run a knife down the side of the jar to get rid of air bubbles.
8. Wipe rim of jar with a wet cloth to remove any residue or stickiness.
9. Remove center lid from simmering water and position it on top.
10. Put screw bands on jars, but do not overtighten!
11. Repeat with all jars, then place jars on canning rack and lower into the water.
12. Place lid on canner, then bring water to a full boil. Boil hard for 10 to 12 minutes.
13. Turn off heat and allow jars to remain in hot water for an addition five minutes.
14. Remove jars from water using a jar lifter, and allow them to sit undisturbed for 24 hours.
15. After 24 hours, remove screw bands and check the seal of the jars. Center lids should have no give whatsoever. If any seals are compromised, store those jars in the fridge.

I know it might look a little intimidating but you can do it!! Here are a few pics of the process…these are from blueberry jam but the process is all the same!

squeezing lemon juice into berries

love the color!

handy funnel, i recommend purchasing this!

finished product. i love the half pint jars, so much cuter πŸ™‚