Sunday, July 5, 2009

First attempt at making jam

This was my first attempt at making jam and it didn't really go so well. It actually didn't turn into jam at all, and instead is more of a strawberry syrup. I don't really like the taste of it because it has an INSANE amount of sugar in it. Basically the recipe called for 8 cups of strawberries, 7 cups of sugar (!), and pectin. I'm looking into other recipes that are not quite so sugartastic.

Some mistakes that I made:

1. I left really big chunks of fruit. I learned afterwards that mashing up the fruit more will help release pectin that helps the jam set.
2. I used the recipe for powdered pectin but I used liquid pectin. While I was making the jam, I had no idea that there was even more than one kind of pectin. I mixed the pectin with the fruit in the very beginning, but liquid pectin is supposed to be added last.
3. I didn't do a test to make sure the jam had set. I thought that since I used pectin it would just magically fix itself.

So even though the jam itself didn't work, I am really excited that I managed to process the jars correctly and that they all sealed!


Shannon said...

I also made jam for the first time on the weekend and also had some problems, although it turned out at the end.

I couldn't find pectin at the grocery store so I bought gelatin instead - but the recipe I was using was for the crockpot and gelatin needs more heat. After 9 hours in the pot with it not thickening or gelling, I dumped it on the stove, brought it to a boil, added more gelatin, and then it worked.

I also used 8 cups of berries but only added 2 cups of sugar. 7 cups sounds like way too much.

Anonymous said...

You can add some lemon juice, put it back on the stove and boil it some more, seeing if it will set. You can also add more pectin. I would crush the fruit first and then try the lemon juice which will cut the sugar and add the pectin last. You can always use it for ice cream and pancake syrup.