Until a few years ago, I had never made strawberry jam. Quite frankly, I was a little intimidated by the whole process. But when a friend told me how easy it is make freezer jam, I decided to give it a try.
After spending the morning at our local U-Pick strawberry patch, I headed straight to the grocery store for my half-pint canning jars and instant pectin. One successful batch later, and I was hooked. The kids love the taste, and I love the fact that we can grab a new jar from the freezer whenever we need more jam.
Of course, the first step in making strawberry jam is picking the berries. Fully ripe and fresh-picked berries make the best jam, so be sure to avoid any berries with yellow tips.
After giving the berries a good clean, remove the tops (and any bad spots) and crush them with a potato masher. Add pectin and sugar according to the directions on the pectin box and stir for three minutes. Note: Pectin comes in individual packages, or you can buy it in a jar like this one. Since I make a lot of jam, I always buy the jar. I prefer the Ball brand, since it calls for significantly less sugar than other brands.
Final step: pour jam into clean jars. A funnel, while not absolutely necessary, certainly cuts down on the mess. Let jam sit out for 30 minutes, then freeze.
My friend was right. It really is that simple!