I’ve made many different recipes of strawberry jam over the years. This classic recipe fits the bill for thick and spreadable and not runny or sour.
Jam flavor is always dependent on the flavor and quality of your strawberries. Also if it’s rained a lot the berries will be more watery. Choose small berries that are perfectly ripe. Taste them before you buy them too!
This recipe is from America’s Test Kitchen. No powdered pectin is added to thicken the jam. Since apples contain lots of natural pectin, grated Granny Smitb apple is the thickener.
Bottled lemon juice is added because it has a more consistent acidity than fresh lemons. I have used fresh lemon which adds a real sour flavor.
To also insure the jam is the right thickness, the jam simmers until it reaches 217 degrees F. I love my Thermapen MK4 to get quick accurate reads!
All these techniques work to make a sweet flavorful thick jam
Preserving the jam is worthwhile. I boil my jars in a huge pot of water. After the jam is added I cover the jars with boiled lids. Then I place the covered jars of jam in the same large pot of boiling water for 5 minutes. It’s not hard. But it takes planning and helps preserve your jam so you can give it as gifts for Christmas!
- 3 pounds fresh strawberries, hulled and cut in 1/2 inch pieces (10 cups)
- 3 cups sugar
- 1 1/2 cups peeled and grated Granny Smith apple (about 1 large apple) Use the large holes of a box grater to grate
- 2 tablespoons bottled lemon juice
- Fill an 8 quart or larger pot 3/4 full with water. Bring to a boil. Place six 8 ounce jars in the water and let simmer until ready to fill with jam.
- In a medium saucepan place 6 rings and lids. Cover with water. Bring to a boil and then lower to a simmer
- In a 5-6 quart pot add strawberries. Mash them with a potato masher
- Add apple, sugar, lemon juice. Bring to a boil and then lower heat to a low simmer
- After about 20 minutes of low simmering and stirring, check the jam temperature. Cook until it reaches 217 degrees F
- Remove jam from heat. Remove jars from water and place on a towel Fill jars using a soup ladle and a wide funnel
- Wipe off the jar rims. Place a jam jar flat top and ring that has been simmering in water on each jar
- To process the jam jars place a kitchen towel in the bottom of the large pot of water.
- Add the 6 jars. Make sure water covers jars by at least 1 inch. Bring to a boil. Then simmer 5 minutes. Remove from heat and cool on a towel or a rack.
- Voila! You’re done!