Thursday, April 30, 2009

Strawberry Jam {Teacher Appreciation Week Idea}

We picked strawberries at the Carlsbad Strawberry Fields this past weekend. We came home and made freezer jam with the precious fruit the kids picked. The kids love to give home-made gifts, and can't wait to share some jam with their favorite teachers. I printed up some of the pictures I took while we were there and created photo cards. The kids wrote their messages on the back. This year, their "Teacher Appreciation" gift will have a truly personal feel. They are very excited to take the jam to school, and loved having been such a big part of the whole process!

Maren's Tip:  Make 52 jars and put them in the freezer.  That way, you will have one jar for each week of the year.

Strawberry Freezer Jam


3-1/4 cups prepared fruit (buy about 2 qt. fully ripe strawberries)

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

1 box MCP Pectin

1 cup corn syrup

4-1/2 cups sugar, measured into separate bowl

RINSE clean plastic containers and lids with boiling water. Dry thoroughly.

CRUSH strawberries thoroughly, one layer at a time. Measure exactly 3-1/4 cups crushed strawberries into large bowl. Stir in lemon juice. Stir in pectin; let stand 30 min., stirring every 5 min. Stir in corn syrup. Gradually add sugar, stirring until well blended. Stir an additional 3 min. or until sugar is completely 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. Store in refrigerator up to 3 weeks or freeze extra containers up to 1 year. Thaw in refrigerator before using.

Kitchen Tips:
How To Measure Precisely
To get exact level cup measures of sugar, spoon sugar into dry metal or plastic measuring cups, then level by scraping excess sugar from top of cup with straight-edged knife.