Somehow amidst all the craziness around here, we managed to make some jam. I made some last year to break in my canner and surprisingly that batch lasted us a full 12 months. I really liked last year's jam but this year I decided to tweak it a bit and try using less honey.
I made three different versions - same as last year, half the honey, and no honey at all. We used most of 2 flats of organic berries. I think it ended up being about 27 pints of jam. V thinks it was about $70 of berries. I used the no sugar pectin that I bought last minute at Ralph's. Next year I need to get the pectin in bulk online so it will be cheaper. It's really not cheap to make it this way but it's honey sweetened and organic with no preservatives. I like being in control of what I eat. Plus, I feel like a super-homemaker when I can.
We didn't really like the no honey version - tho it was a beautiful bright red. I think the berries are just too acidic. But the others turned out well. I am happy with the half honey version so I think I'll do that from here on out. At least for strawberry jam. I am starting to think about berry combinations. Maybe next year I'll be confident enough to get more adventurous. Raspberry jam is actually my favorite but fresh raspberries are super expensive around here and I've never had frozen berry jam turn out for me.
|mash the berries (V's job)|
|boil berries, pectin, and apple juice. add honey and boil 3 min.|
|fill the jars and process 10 minutes at sea level|