STRAWBERRY FREEZER JAM
2 cups fresh, crushed strawberries (about 1 pound whole)
2 tablespoons lemon juice
4¼ cups sugar
¾ cup water
6 tablespoons (1 1.75 oz box) fruit pectin powder
potato masher or food processor
6 * 1-cup hot, sterilized* Mason jars (They really must be hot and newly sterilized.)
Makes 5-to-6 cups. Takes 1 hour plus maybe 3 hours to set.
Remove green stems from strawberries. Cut each strawberry into 8 bits. Smash strawberry bits with potato masher until thoroughly crushed. (Or bits add to food processor. Pulse processor until thoroughly crushed, but not yet pureed.) Some strawberry bits should remain.
Add strawberries and lemon juice to large mixing bowl. Mix with fork until well blended. Add sugar. Mix with fork or whisk until sugar dissolves completely. (Sugar that doesn’t dissolve make the jam grainy.)
Add water and pectin to pan. Bring to boil using high heat. Stir constantly. Boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Pour boiling water over strawberry/sugar mix. Stir constantly for 3 minutes. The mixture should start to jell and thicken.
Pour strawberry mixture into Mason jars. Leave ½” gap at the top. Stir until strawberry bits, gel, and juice blend. Put in refrigerator until jam sets, but not longer than 24 hours. If desired, serve some immediately. Store the rest in freezer for up to 1 year or in the refrigerator for 3 weeks.
1) Mason jars are round.
2) Not everything is round. Sometimes pizzas are rectangular. Flower pots can be square. Refrigerators are never round. No, not ever.
3) However, Mason jars must be round. It would be impossible to screw on or off a square lid.
Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D
My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.