Jamming Jamboree

In the spirit of jam week

Years ago, Professor X’s sister and brother-in-law taught me how to make cooked jam. I am certainly no expert, but I have enjoyed this now annual tradition with berries I picked, or purchased at farmer’s markets.

I am no culinary expert, so I’ve been surprised by the number of people that I know that are intimidated by making cooked jam. I’ve created this “cheat sheet” of instructions based on my blueberry-jam-making from last weekend.

Open your packet of pectin and determine how many “cups” of jam your berry will make. Put that number of 1/2 pint canning jar into large pot filled with water. Boil to kill any bacteria. Let boil until cooked jam is almost complete.

Rinse berries. Sample. Yum!

Crush berries in a flat pan with a potato masher. Not all berries need to be crushed completely. Pour into measuring cup. Continue to mash until you have the number of cups of crushed berries as pectin packet instructs.

Cook measured, crushed berries over medium heat along with water, lemon juice (if needed), and powdered pectin. Cook until mix reaches a continuous rolling boil while stirring (always takes longer than I expect).

Add pre-measured sugar into the cooking berries. Do not be alarmed that it is an obnoxiously huge volume. This is what makes the jam so yummy.

Cook again until ingredients reach a rolling boil while stirring continuously. Set timer for 2-10 minutes (depending on the instructions on your pectin packet) of boiling.

Here is the step that used to take 4 hands, many tears, and several curse words. Over the years, I have chilled out about this step significantly and now can do it fairly quickly.

Use tongs to take all of the canning jars out of the boiling water. Pour some of the hot water in the jars into a bowl with the canning lids (they need to get hot for the rims to adhere properly). Pour the rest of the hot water back into the water pot, as you will use it again.

Put a canning funnel over the mouths of the jam jars. Using a ladle, pour cooked jam into the jars until it almost reaches the top.

When all jam jars are full, place the flat adhering lid over the jar mouth (I use a magnet to get it out of the hot water). Twist the twisty lid rim tightly onto the jar using hot hands.

Put the jam jars back into the pot of hot water. Keep the jars immersed in the water until the water has been gently boiling for about 10 minutes. This step continues to kill any bacteria and gets the jam ready for storage. It takes at least 30 minutes for this step on my stove.

Remove jam from the hot water. Let them sit on the counter overnight. As the jam cools, all of the flat lids should pop inwards with the vacuum that forms from the cooling air.

When the water has cooled completely, do the green ‘thang and pour the water into the plants outside. It is clean water that was only used for boiling.

Presto! Jam-o!

I use my jam as Christmas gifts for family members and we use it for the next 12 months in our home. Nothing is better than homemade jam. ๐Ÿ™‚

Jamming Jamboree!

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  1. This brings back so many memories for me. My mother used to do this when I was little. I remember every step! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Yum Yum Yummy!!!

    Oh that looks so good!!! I am jealous of your domestic skills! ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. I haven’t made ANY jam this year. It’s crazy!
    I’ve never made blueberry jam before. Yum!!!

  4. The jam you gave us years ago set me on the road to my own canning experiments. Now I cook up batches of cranberry conserves every fall that have been doled out as Christmas and dinner guest gifts. I’ll send you a jar or two from this year’s batch.

  5. Looks sooooo good. I just need to find a good source of reasonably priced berries now. We tried to go blueberry picking this weekend but the only farm on the pennisula (that I could find) with u-pick had apparently gone out of business…lame!

  6. I remember my grandmother making jelly from the grapes that grew over her back patio in Venice, California.

    Thanks for taking me back.

  7. Wow, that looks so delicious ๐Ÿ™‚ I’ve only had homemade jam once, and I’ll never forget it. It was incredible!

  8. Jamma-lamma-ding-dong! I absolutely LOVE blueberry jam – ‘cept for me it’s wild Maine blueberries that make it sooooo good! I think your steps are fantastic – could have used this a month or so ago when I made my own strawberry jam for the first time.
    I know you will be enjoying toast & jam for the next year!

  9. My mother used to make freezer jam, but sometimes she would make it that way too.

  10. YUM. O.

    I’ll be canning my tomatoes soon, but now you’ve got me thinking about jam!

  11. Thanks so much for posting this! I’d love to try this out.

  12. You lost me at home-made. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Thank goodness for Smuckers.

  13. I’m going to be doing this very same thing this afternoon!

    Blueberry conserve here I come!


  14. OOH blueberries. You are making my mouth water. I have tried to make my own jam. I can never seem to get it to come our right though.

  15. Pssst…..

    I love home-made jam. You can send any extra to me and we will take care of it:

    Mrs. OHmommy
    123 Suburbia drive
    Ohio, Ohio

  16. We picked rasberries and made jam together this summer. I is DELISHIOUS and simple to do.

    Now.. show me what I should do with this zuccini! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  17. I can attest that her jam is superb!!

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