Last week The Man and I spent time with our best friends, picking their raspberries, and ejoying a large, late evening snack with them. The next day, it was JAM-MAKING DAY!
I don't do a whole lot of home preserving, but am trying to do a little more each year. Or at least, a LITTLE each year! ;)
I started with washing the raspberries, which may have been a bit of a mistake. They disintegrate pretty quickly and the water content of the jam was probably a little higher than ideal. The jam isn't quite as thick as I would have liked it. It's not runny, but it is a little on the thin side. Of course, the falling apart part isn't really the issue because you mash 'em anyway for the jam, but if you want to keep some for eating fresh or freezing, you MIGHT find them a little TOO mushy! Next time, I will just pick through them and not bother washing. Somehow it seems to me I knew this already from a past experience, but clearly needed the reminder.
Once my sink was available again, I washed the jars and lids in hot, soapy water. The jars I dried and the lids went into a pot on the stove to boil. The recipe stated a yield of 7.5 half-pints, but I ended up with closer to nine. Again, could have been the higher water content due to the washing. I initially prepared two full-pint and four half-pint jars, but I had to add another half-pint jar after this picture was taken.
Man, you just gotta love jam ingredient proportions: 4 cups raspberries to 6.5 cups sugar!
Mix 'em together on the stovetop with a tablespoon of butter to keep foam from forming on top. Once it's at a rolling boil, you dump in the package of Certo (or whatever brand fruit pectin you happen to be using) and bring back to a boil for another minute. Mine never actually quit boiling, and I think that because of the end result, I could probably have boiled it a little longer. Whatever.
Then use a wide-mouth funnel to pour into jars, leaving 1/8" headspace. Grab lids from boiling water (using tongs, of course!), close jars, and process in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes.
Take a goofy self-portrait using your reflection in the shiny pot...
And there's your jam!!
Your very own yummy, homemade raspberry jam!!
And if I can do it...
YOU SO CAN, TOO!
(Haha, get it??!)