Make the most of cheap strawberries and get making some jam so you can enjoy the taste of summer throughout the year. This recipe should make around 6 lbs (2.7 kg) of jam.
* Jam sugar is sugar with added citric acid and helps jam to set when using fruit that little pectin (setting agent) of its own such as strawberries. But lemon does the job and if you like a slightly loose or runny jam for your croissants, just use ordinary granulated sugar.
Clean jars: Make sure that all equipment is scrupulously clean before you start. All jars and lids must be sterilised. This can be done in a dishwasher on a high heat cycle. Alternatively you can wash them by hand, but make sure you use very hot water and rinse them well.
- Hull the strawberries, wash and drain well.
- Put into a preserving pan with the lemon juice.
- (You don’t have to have a posh preserving pan, any large heavy based pan would work. I use my mother’s old pressure cooker pan)
- Simmer gently until the fruit is soft.
- Add the sugar
- Stir the sugar gently until it has dissolved. Bring to a rolling boil and boil for 10-15 minutes until the jam sets when tested*.
- * To test for a good set, wait until the jam has been boiling rapidly for about 15 minutes, then take a cold saucer and drop a small spoonful of the jam on to it. Let it cool for a minute, then push your finger through the jam – if it wrinkles it’s ready; if not, boil for a few more minutes.
- Remove the scum: A small knob of butter added to the mixture will help to disperse the scum and give the jam a lovely glossy texture. Leave the jam to cool slightly before bottling.
Place the jars and lids on a baking tray and slide into a hot oven (gas mark 3/160°C/fan 140°C/325°F) for 10-15 mins to warm them up.
- Pot and seal the jam while it’s still hot.
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