Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Strawberry Freezer Jam

You'll never buy strawberry jam again!
This is a faithful, time tested Freezer Jam's PERFECT!   Yes, it's the same recipe on the Sure-Jell package, but really, why mess with perfection?   Make sure to use the exact amount of sugar it calls for, or it won't set.   It is still less sugar (and no preservatives) than the store-bought brands.

You'll get five, 8 oz. jars of yummy goodness from this recipe.  So, take advantage of the beautiful fruit in season and double, even triple this recipe.  It will keep up to a year in the freezer, and three weeks in the fridge, once you open the jar. 

People love to get this jam as a gift, so share them with your friends and neighbors. 

2 cups crushed strawberries (about 1 qt. fully ripe strawberries, stems removed)
1 tsp. fresh lemon zest (if you like a tang)
4 cups sugar
3/4 cup water
1 pkg. SURE-JELL Fruit Pectin*
Rinse plastic or glass containers in boiling water, and make sure they are completely dry before filling with jam.  I always use the Ball glass mason jars but plastic containers work great also. 
Rinse strawberries gently with clean water, pat dry, then stem and crush them thoroughly, one layer at a time.  (For this, I use a potato masher, 1/2 cup at a time.)  DO NOT USE A BLENDER!

Measure exactly 2 cups of strawberries into a large bowl.  (It's really important to measure the berries and sugar exactly, or the jam will not set properly.)   Add the sugar and stir for several minutes until well blended. Let stand for 10 min., stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile, combine water and pectin into a small saucepan.  Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly. Once boiling, stir for 1 min. 

Remove from heat and add it to the strawberry mixture. Stir mixture for really well, for several minutes, until sugar is well dissolved and no longer grainy; a few sugar crystals may remain, but that's fine.
Immediately fill containers with jam and leave 1/2'' of head-space at the top.   Wipe off top edges and cover with lids.  Allow to stand at room temperature for 24 hours.

After 24 hours you can store it in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks or freeze it for up to 1 year!  Thaw frozen jam in the fridge before using.

Here's a hint:  Bake some biscuits and use a jar right away!  Spoil yourself a little!

"Rejoice always, pray continually, and give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus."   -1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

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