I haven’t been strawberry picking in ages! I was at my local market and saw the (pricy) Ontario picked strawberries and thought it would be a good reason for me to get away from the computer and enjoy the beautiful summer weather. So here’s the thing about strawberry picking – it’s really only worth it if you have your own bucket/basket and if you want a lot of them. I’ll be honest, I ended up spending more than those pricy ones from the market but it was about the experience and enjoying the summer. Don’t give me that look. So what do you do when you have a bunch of strawberries? You make jam! It’s a great way to take advantage of your local strawberries at their best and freeze for later. Freezer jam is also super easy, bonus!
No secret recipe here people, I used the recipe from the CERTO pectin box for this. I figure they make pectin, they MUST know what they’re doing when it comes to jam. What’s great about freezer jam is that you don’t have to do all that labour intensive sterilizing and sealing the jars. The downside is that they don’t keep as long (3 weeks in the fridge, 3-6 months in the freezer). If you find that it starts to deteriorate before then, you might have a faulty fridge or freezer in which case you should contact someone like Pat’s Appliance Repair. It’s important to maintain fully functioning appliances if you enjoy cooking, as they can make a big difference to the quality of product you manage to produce. That said, this jam is so delicious it won’t be around for long anyway!
STRAWBERRY FREEZER JAM RECIPE (from CERTO)
• 2 cups prepared fruit (buy about 1 qt. fully ripe strawberries)
• 4 cups sugar, measured into separate bowl
• 1 pouch CERTO Fruit Pectin
• 2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
• Rinse clean plastic containers and lids with boiling water. Dry thoroughly.
• Stem and crush strawberries thoroughly, one layer at a time. Measure exactly 2 cups prepared fruit into large bowl. Stir in sugar. Let stand 10 min., stirring occasionally.
• mix pectin and lemon juice in small bowl. Add to strawberry mixture; stir 3 min. or until sugar is dissolved and no longer grainy. (A few sugar crystals may remain.)
• fill all containers immediately to within 1/2 inch of tops. Wipe off top edges of containers; immediately cover with lids. Let stand at room temperature 24 hours. Jam is now ready to use. Refrigerate up to 3 weeks or freeze up to 1 year. Thaw in refrigerator.
And because I love you so much I designed these adorable lid labels if you wanted to give your jam as a gift. Just print on paper and use as an insert between the two lids. I also couldn’t resist and spray painted the lids blue. Hello?! Why don’t they have jars with different colour lids to buy?
Download your strawberry jam labels here.
Now all you need is some fresh bread to toast, or croissants would be even better and slather with your homemade jam, enjoy!
If you liked this recipe, you can find more in our Good Eats section.