Preserving the Last Days of Summer with Homemade Jam

Preserves - Strawberry and Plum

The end of summer is sadly near, but the bounty of fresh fruit is still in the produce aisles and I’m determined to enjoy every last bit of them.  I never realized ho simple making my own preserves could be.  After making my first batch of strawberry, I tried every flavor from figs to raspberry, plum and peaches.  My only suggestion is to vary the sugar and pectin depending on the fruit and don’t be afraid to add a splash of water. My plums gave very little juice, so a splash of water did wonders.  One batch of strawberries was incredibly juicy, leaving my mixture too thin, so a teaspoon more pectin helped firm up the preserves.

Homemade Strawberry Preserves

16 ounces fresh, hulled strawberries (preferably organic)

1/4 cup organic sugar

1 teaspoon pectin (fresh lemon juice can be substituted)

Directions:

In a saucepan, combine all the ingredients and heat, on medium high, until fruit softens and mixture becomes a thick, syrupy fruit mixture.  Cook for approximately 10-15 minutes, stirring constantly.  Pour mixture into sterilized glass mason jars about 3/4 of the way full, (here is a helpful link on sterilizing cans) place lids on top and close loosely.  Submerge jars into boiling water for 5 minutes, then turn off the heat and allow jars to sit in hot water for another 10 minutes.  Carefully remove jars, wipe off water and store in pantry for up to 6 months.

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