Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Strawberry Freezer Jammin'

Posted by Devin

Ooh, yeah! All right!
We're jammin':
I wanna jam it wid you.
We're jammin', jammin',
And I hope you like jammin', too.

Sorry, couldn't resist throwing a little Bob Marley in there. I had this song in my head all day while we were making our jam, so I thought it appropriate to share.

I know many of you have probably made freezer jam before, but if you haven't yet it's time to give it a try. It's easy, fun, and oh the sweet yummy homemade jam-goodness! So grab some friends, read this how-to, and let the jammin' begin!

Strawberries were on sale this weel for $0.99/lb so Tara gave me a ring and said "Let's make jam!" Awesome! We took advantage of a preschool morning and met each other at the grocery store after dropping off the kiddos. Here's what we each bought: 8 lbs strawberries, 5 lbs sugar, and 5 boxes of pectin. We weren't sure if we had exactly the right amounts and as it turned out we didn't, ha! We had more strawberried than we needed. I'm supposed to be the "math person" so we'll blame this one on me.


 
 
As we soon found, though, it's not an exact science. The amount of strawberries you need depends on how chunky you like your jam. I preffered mine a little more processed so it only ended up taking 5 lbs of strawberries to make 2 1/2 batches of jam. Tara liked her strawberries a bit chunkier so it took 6 lbs of strawberries for 2 1/2 batches. The thinner strawberries went further. Here's Tara triple checking how much fruit we were supposed to use.


So here is what we ended up using:

We are calling a "batch" enough to fill 5-6 pint sized mason jars. You can half this, double it, whatever you need. We each made 2 1/2 batches.

Ingredients for 1 batch:
- 2 boxes of Sure Jell Premium Fruit Pectin
- Strawberries: 2 lbs for my smoother jam, slightly more for Tara's chunkier jam (2 2/5 lbs), it needs to make 4 cups after it is processed.
- 8 cups sugar
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 5-6 pint sized mason jars


Step 1: Wash your strawberries, cut off the stems, and dice them into medium sized pieces.

 

Step 2: We put our strawberries into Tara's Bosch blender and simply pulsed it a few times until it reached our desired consistencies. Smoother for me, chunkier for Tara. All of the strawberries didn't fit at once so it took about 3 times of filling the blender jar 1/2 way full to get it all processed. Pour precisely 4 cups of the processed strawberries into a large bowl.

 
 

Step 3: Pour sugar into the strawberries and stir until blended. Let sit for 10 minutes.

 

Step 4: While strawberries are sitting, put your water and 2 packages of pectin into a sauce pan. Bring to a boil and let boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly throughout this process. Remove from heat. (You can see Tara and I stirring, stirring, stirring!!!)

 
 

Step 5: Pour the pectin/water mixture into the strawberries once the 10 minutes for step 3 have finished. Stir for 3 minutes.

Step 6: Pour the jam into clean mason jars (or any container with a tight lide).


Step 7: Let the jam sit 24 hours at room temperature. Then put the jam into the freezer or if you want to use it right away, into the refrigerator. The jam will stay good in the refrigerator for 3 weeks and for 1 year in the freezer.
 

And that's it! Not too bad, huh? Tara and I are set on jam, at least forawhile. With my 4 boys and her 5 kids it probably won't last long in either of our houses.

One more thing: on top of being an awesome, delicious treat to have stocked up in your freezer, homemade jam makes a wonderful gift. Wouldn’t you like to get some? I would! I decided to fill a number of baby food jars with jam and will be using it for teacher appreciation gifts. The end of the school year is fast approaching! Check out my blog post for that coming soon! 

~Devin

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4 Comments:

At April 18, 2013 at 12:10 AM , Blogger Kary said...

You 2 inspire me. I love you guys I love that you guys created this creative outlet. Love you hot momma

 
At April 18, 2013 at 11:24 AM , Blogger Tara and Devin said...

Thanks Kary! So glad you like it!

 
At May 13, 2014 at 8:31 PM , Blogger NadiaThinks said...

Do you have to buy a special kind of Mason jar to keep them in the freezer without breaking? I've made jam but never tried keeping it longer and that sounds awesome!!!

 
At May 16, 2014 at 7:15 AM , Blogger Tara Carroll said...

Hi Nadia! No special kind needed, any old mason jar will do! Thanks for stopping by!

 

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