When we were growing up, I don't ever remember having store-bought jam. My mom would whip out a million batches of this jam every summer and we would eat it year-round. After I moved out, I remember sneaking jars of jam out of the freezer so that I could take it to college. I still remember having to buy my first jar of store-bought jam after I got married and being so disappointed in myself for not making my own jam. Well, after 8 years of marriage, I am happy to announce that I finally made my own . . . and I don't know what took me so long!! It was seriously so easy . . . and my husband RAVES about it. He now thinks I am a domestic goddess. This recipe is for MCP pectin only. We've tried the other pectins and it turns out runny.
If you have ever wanted to try homemade jam, I promise that this recipe is simple and fail-proof!
Mom's Strawberry Freezer Jam
(from Grandma A's recipe book)
3 pounds of strawberries (I used three 16 oz containers)*
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 box MCP pectin (must be MCP pectin)
1 cup light corn syrup (Karo Syrup)
4 cups sugar
*My mom always uses this recipe for peach jam, apricot jam, and raspberry jam. They are all just as delicious! Just substitute whatever fruit you want for the strawberries.
Wash and cut the tops off all the strawberries. Place in a large bowl.
Mash the strawberries (I used a good ol' potato masher and it works great!). If you like chunky jam, leave more chunks. Remember that the strawberries will continue to break down even more as you add other ingredients.
Add 1/4 cup lemon juice. Slowly add the package of pectin (I would add a 1/3 of the package at a time and mix it in really well before adding the next 1/3). Stir until all mixed in (the picture shows right after I added lemon juice, which is why it looks so juicy). Let sit for 30 minutes at room temperature.
Stir in 1 cup light corn syrup. Stir in sugar- 1 cup at time. Mix in VERY well between each cup of sugar.
Place large bowl in microwave and microwave for 4-5 minutes (uncovered), until it starts to bubble around the edges.
Stir it and pour into jars or plastic freezer containers (I was able to get 4 1/2 (16 oz) containers of jam from this batch). Leave jam sitting out at room temperature for 1-2 hours to let it cool down before putting it in the freezer.
This jam tastes amazing on hot bread . . . and makes a great gift for friends and neighbors!
Want some delicious bread recipes to put this jam on?
Check these out: