Monday, June 20, 2011

Time to Jam!

 It's that time of year again- time to make jam.

Once you start making your own jam, your kids won't want you to go back to the store bought varieties because you can not only customize the jam to how you like it, but because it just tastes better.

Because fruit is usually expensive, I try to make it go further by mixing rhubbarb in our jam recipes.  (Who doesn't have a bed of rhubbarb in the midwest??)      It also gives it a kick.

One of the easiest recipes I have calls for these items:

7 cups of cut up rhubbarb
4 cups sugar (that sugar is organic and unbleached)
6 oz of gelatin
3 cups fresh fruit or 1-21 oz jar of pie filling (if you don't have access to fresh fruit)

Bring the rhubbarb, sugar, and fruit to boiling in a pan until the fruit and rhubbarb becomes "saucy" (losing form) and simmer for about 10-15 minutes. 

Fruit just added- not yet "saucy"
 Remove from the heat and stir in the jello packets. (I usually use raspberry or strawberry because the flavors blend well)

Pour the jam into jars, seal, and put in a waterbath for about 20 minutes.
Remove and let cool.

Making your own jam is a great way to package fruit that is in-season, it's less expensive than purchasing it in the store, and it's just one more way for you to be self sufficient using items that you grow yourself. 

They also make great gifts :-)

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