A couple of weeks ago I visited Auckland’s French markets, La Cigale, in Parnell. I hadn’t been before, but it was lovely! So many delicious things… I was drooling. I came home with pastries, a tart and 4 punnets of strawberries. They were a bargain, I couldn’t resist!
After eating quite a few, I thought I would use the rest to make jam! I also had some old cherries lurking in the back of the fridge, so I figured I might as well pop those in there too. I hadn’t made jam before, so it was quite the experience! Most recipes I looked at seemed pretty similar. I followed Annabel Langbein’s as it seemed especially easy.
Strawberry and Cherry Jam
- 500g crushed berries: I used strawberries and cherries, about a 4:1 ratio.
- 500g sugar
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- Combine berries and sugar in a non-corrosive bowl and leave to stand for a couple of hours.
- Add lemon juice and bring to the boil. Boil for about 5 minutes, or until jam starts to set.
- Ladle into sterilised jars and seal with pop-top lids.
So, it wasn’t particularly hard, my main problem was the issue of properly sealing and sterilising the jars. I couldn’t be bothered going out to buy preserving jars, so I did a clean out of the fridge and tossed out the contents of a whole bunch of jars that I was no longer using, and put them through the dishwasher. Note: the dishwasher will not rid your jar lids of curry paste odour! Ew! Needless to say, I didn’t use those ones. In the end, I was left with a hodge podge of random jars, only half of which (I would later realise) had the pop seals on the lids. Oops.
I cooked the jam as above, for probably a bit longer than 5 minutes, meanwhile keeping the jars warm in the oven (and the lids in a pot of boiling water). I then ladled the jam into the jars, leaving about a centimetre to spare, wiped the rims clean and screwed on the lids. I put the jars in a large pot of boiling water and boiled for about 10 minutes, which is supposed to ensure the contents are sterile. We don’t want any nasty bugs in there, thank you very much. I then left the jars to cool, and got very excited each time I heard a ‘POP!’ from the kitchen, indicating a proper seal.
I ended up with a few jars with good seals to store in the pantry, and a few jars that didn’t seal properly, so I’m keeping them in the fridge and will be trying to use them up in up-coming baking. Any suggestions are welcome! What do you make with jam?