This is the first in several attempts at preserving Summer's Bounty. I hope to talk you through each step as we learn together. I'm not a seasoned canning expert but merely a mom showing you it's not as intimidating as we once thought.
This week we'll start with something VERY easy FREEZER JAM!
- You'll need about 4 c. crushed fruit. (I used about 3 lb. fresh strawberries, the package suggest 4 lb. but I had left over strawberries that I just added to our pancakes for dinner.) $3.00
- Freezer Jam Fruit Pectin 1.85
- 1 to 1 1/2 c. Sugar .25
- Containers to freeze in (I used Ball Freezer Jars 2.50)
2. Combine sugar with the packet of freezer jam fruit pectin.
3. Crush your fruit. I used a food processor (I'm so in love with this machine) and pulsed it until the fruit was chopped. You'll want some fruit pieces so you don't want to puree it. If you don't have a food processor dice up the fruit and use a potato masher to crush the fruit. I've done this before and it turned out great.
4. You'll want this consistency.
5. Add 4 c. of your crushed strawberries to your pectin/sugar mix.
6. Stir for 3 minutes, making sure you scrap the edges as you stir.
7. Fill your jars using a ladle and leave about 1/2 inch at the top, it will expand in the freezer and you'll need the extra space. (These jars have a fill to here mark.) Leave your jam filled containers on the counter for 30 minutes so jam can thicken up.
8. Then place them in the freezer. This keeps frozen for up to a year, but I don't it lasts that long. It also keeps in the fridge for up to 3 weeks. It's so much better than store bought and once you try it there's no going back. So go ahead give it a try and let me know how it turns out.
For more great recipes check out the recipe swap over at GCC.
FYI these are directions on the back of the package of pectin I wanted to show you it's not as hard as you think it is. The price turned out to be around $1.50 a jar. The next time you make these it will drop to closer to $1.00, since you don't have to add the containers in the price. It's even more economical if you grow your own fruit or are given some from friends or family.