- 4 cups rhubarb
- 2 cups strawberry
- 4 cups sugar
- juice from one lemon
- You can also switch amounts
- and do 4 strawberry and
- 2 rhubarb cups.
Well…I finally made some real jam. I hadn’t done it before, because I just couldn’t stand to use all that sugar and stir and boil for all that time. But my son has entered the age of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches…(or as he says “swanich”) and we are running out of Granny’s homemade jam, so it’s up to me.
I grew my own rhubarb for this, but my strawberries aren’t quite ripe yet, so I bought a small container of them. I used a recipe from the Ball Canning Blue Book.
Wash and chop all fruit. Add sugar and lemon juice. (The lemon juice reacts to some natural pectin in fruit and makes it work). Boil on medium to medium high heat for a LONG TIME, stirring very often. Take care not to allow it to boil over, as I did, while talking to Granny on the phone and getting advice. She said it wouldn’t take more than 30 minutes, but I think I stirred and boiled for almost 45. Maybe rhubarb doesn’t have enough natural pectin, or maybe my batch was too deep in the pot, and I should have used a shallower pan. I don’t know. (When I made a second batch on June 10th, I used Pectin, and then it only needed to boil for about 3 minutes. Lovely! Use 1.5 Tablespoons of pectin). If you want your jam smooth, use an immersion blender and puree it right before pouring into jars.
In any case, when I felt it was thickening up, I was left with just 3 small jars worth of jam. The rest of the water had steamed off. I think they were half pints or slightly larger. I put jam into my sanitized* and hot* jars and processed* for 10 minutes. Fill jars with 1/4 inch of space leftover at the top.
*Sanitize jars and lids and rings by placing in canning pot in boiling water, while you make the jam.
*Remove jars from canning pot of boiling water, only at the moment when you are ready to fill them, not earlier, or they will cool down.
*The term “process” when used in canning, means the amount of time you boil your filled and sealed jars under water in a lidded canner. The water must be boiling during this time. When putting the lids on, turn the rings until just finger tip tight. Do not overly tighten, because air bubbles will need to escape during processing. Here are some helpful tools you’ll need when canning.