About a week ago, I finally went out and picked some strawberries at a u-pick farm. (When I say some, I mean 16.3 lbs!)
I had a few jam projects on my agenda. The first was a classic strawberry jam; 3.5 lbs of berries, 4.5 c of sugar, 6 Tbsp lemon juice, and the seeds and membrane of 2 lemons. I have never really liked jam that is made with pectin so I was excited about this recipe. Instead of adding pectin ( in packet form) you add the seeds and membranes of a couple of lemons which have just enough pectin.
I washed and quartered all of the strawberries, put them in a pot with the lemon juice and a sachet of lemon seeds and membranes.
I let this simmer until the strawberries were nice and soft. (This didn’t take too long because the strawberries were so ripe!) I removed it from the heat and stirred in the sugar.
I put it back on the heat and cooked it, watching carefully so the sugar didn’t burn, until it jelled up a bit on a chilled spoon. This is a step in jam making that I don’t have a lot of patience for, I also don’t mind if it is runny, so I usually figure the jam is done when I can’t wait any longer.
I ladled the hot jam into hot, sterile jars and then processed them in a water bath. I love hearing the pop of the lids sealing while they are cooling on the counter!
The second project was inspired by a recipe that I found on food52, it is a strawberry chili jam. I followed the same recipe as I did for the classic strawberry with one adjustment. While the strawberries and lemon bits were simmering,
I through in 3 dried New Mexico red chilis and 1/3 of a dried chipotle pepper ( which was very smokey).