Strawberry Jam

Strawberry Jam

2 – 3 pint jars, depending on how thick you like your jam
2 pints of strawberries
3 cups granulated sugar
1/4 cup lemon juice
pinch of salt

Slice the strawberries

Put them in a high-sided pot.

I’m sure you know what strawberries in a pot look like, but sheesh, aren’t they pretty?

Mash ‘em.  If you want some texture in your finished jam, then lightly mash ‘em.  If you like your jam smooth, go to town.

I like some texture

Cook the strawberries by themselves on medium low for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Prep lemon juice and sugar.  Fresh squeezed is best, but, you know, no judgement.

The additional advantage to fresh squeezed (besides, obviously, freshness) is that you can use the nubbin which I always cut off the top of the lemon to make it easier to squeeze. This nubbin-that-could sits in the jam while it’s cooking and releases its pectin and all that pectin’s awesome gelling power into your jam.  If you like that sort of thing.  Remove nubbin before canning.

Once the strawberries have been cooking for 10 minutes, add the sugar and lemon juice, stir, and let cook on a low boil for @ 20-25 minutes, stirring frequently so nothing sticks to the bottom of the pot and burns.  Continue until the resulting “liquid” falls in a single stream from your spoon.  If you want to know for sure what the thickness will be once it’s cooled, turn off the heat (for the moment), take a spoonful, put it on a plate, pop it in the freezer for 3 minutes.  If it’s the consistency you like, stop.  If not, back on the burner.  Repeat until happy.

Skim any white froth that has accumulated at the top.

Ladle into jars leaving 1/2″ at the top.  Seal jars and put them in a pot where boiling water comes at least 2″ up the sides of the jars for 20 minutes.

These are pretty much ready to enjoy now, but I’m putting mine away for winter, when I’ll be dreaming longingly for strawberries with only the palest flavorless shadows of berries to console me.

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