When including the recipe for strawberry jam in my cookbook, Jam It, Pickle it, Cure It, the publisher requested that I cut the quantity (10 eight-ounce jars) in half. But I stood firm. Strawberry jam is made to be shared—and people love it when you do.
- Six pints fresh, perfect, sweet strawberries
- Nine cups sugar
- 3/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (from about five lemons), rinds (kept whole) and seeds reserved
Wash, dry, stem, and slice (or chop) the berries. In a large bowl, toss them gently with the sugar and lemon juice; don’t bruise your fruit. Let them macerate for four to eight hours to release their juice. Tie up the lemon seeds in cheesecloth or an empty tea bag.
Transfer the strawberries and the lemon rinds and seeds to a very large stockpot. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and boil for three minutes, then turn the heat to medium and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Skim off the loads and loads of foam that will surface—this is best done with a large metal spoon. Remove as much of the foam as possible, as doing so will give your jam a clear, brilliant color.
Allow the jam to cool in the pot, then transfer to a wide-mouthed bowl or baking dish. Discard the lemon rinds and seeds.
Let the jam sit, uncovered, stirring occasionally, overnight. This will help the jam thicken and keep the fruit from separating from the syrup. If the jam is not to your desired thickness, allow it to sit for one more day.
Transfer the jam to jars, ensuring that the lip and threads of the jars remain clean and unsticky. You can refrigerate strawberry jam for up to four months. Want to can your jam? For that, you’ll have to read my book!
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