Sunday, June 13, 2010

What's Cookin?: Hood Strawberry Freezer Jam

Yum, it's Hood strawberry season. These are my favorite types of strawberries. They're usually one of the first of the season (available early June in Oregon). It has a high sugar content so they're super sweet. They're excellent jamming-berries too!
Since I bought a flat of strawberries, I decided to make some freezer jam. I love freezer jam because the jam is so delicious and it's super easy to make. I bought a package of the Ball Instant Fruit Pectin and followed the recipe on the back. I also found plastic covers for the Ball brand glass jars. It's more convenient than the 2-part metal seal tops.

Hood Strawberry Freezer Jam
Adapted from Ball Recipes

4 c. crushed strawberries (about 4 lbs or 1/4 flat fresh fruit)
1 1/2 c. sugar
6 (1/2 pint) jam jars with lids

1) Wash glass jars and tops with soap and hot water or run through the dishwasher. You do not need to sterilize them in a hot water bath. Just make sure they are clean.
2) Working in small batches, wash fresh strawberries and dry on a layer of paper towels. Towel dry the top with another layer of paper towels. Hull the strawberry tops and cut off any bruised or inedible parts.
3) Add fruit to a medium sized bowl.

4) Using a potato masher, mash fruit until most of the fruit is crushed. Do not puree fruit as you want to keep some bits of fresh fruit. Pour crushed fruit into a measuring cup and fill until you have 4 cups of crushed fruit.

5) In a large mixing bowl, stir together pectin mix and sugar until well blended.
6) Add crushed fruit to the pectin/sugar mixture and stir for about 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula and mix well.
7) Ladle jam into clean jars and cover. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes to set. Store in refrigerator for 3-4 weeks or in the freezer for up to 1 year. Enjoy!!