As I mentioned yesterday, I picked wild blueberries with the intention of making jam. However, although I come from a family of canners (my grandmother, Mum, sister Pamela, Auntie Dorothy on my dad’s side, and my Auntie Connie on my mum’s side, and there’s probably many more relatives…) I have never done any preserving myself.
So I did what I tend to do when I want to know something– I signed out a library book– Well Preserved: Small Batch Preserving for the New Cook by Mary Ann Dragan.
Yes, I also consulted my mum, but I like being able to read things through. Because although the author claims that jam-making is incredibly simple, if you’ve never done it before there are several things you need to know about preparing the jars, cooking the jam, and processing the filled jars. (That’s one thing that many people [e.g, my mum ;)] say, you don’t need to process jam, but I’d rather reduce the risk botulism poisoning as much as possible, thank you, especially since I intend to give the jam as gifts.) So if you are new to preserving, I would definitely recommend this book. I’m putting it on my Amazon wish list.
One thing I especially like is that the book’s jam recipes use the old-fashioned long-boil method, eliminating the need for commercial pectin products and reducing the amount of sugar needed. I often don’t like jam, as it is too sweet, so this was perfect. And all I needed was sugar and lemon juice along with my wild berries, which meant I could easily make it organic.
Only 3 ingredients necessary!
The next day I made English muffins.
Do you make jam or other preserves?