I went to the new farmer's market here in Mundy Township (the township in which we live) this morning. It was the first week, as the resolution was just adopted in the last month or so. I'm excited to have another market so close, this one is only about a mile and a half away from our house. It was quite small, only about six vendors I think, but I'm sure it will grow as time goes on and the word gets out. I picked up some local strawberries, believe it or not, from a farmer that lives down the road from us. They put in a new hydroponic system this year and are able to grow strawberries even now! I couldn't believe it. And they are quite tasty, very sweet, too. So I picked up 4 quarts to can a batch of strawberry jam this morning. I tasted it as I was filling the jars and it is quite good. I'm excited to have this on hand. I got 7 half-pints out of this.
Strawberry Jam with No Added Pectin
(Page 23 of the Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving)
8 cups crushed, hulled strawberries (this was about 4 quarts of berries for me)
6 cups granulated sugar
Prepare canner, jars, and lids.
In a large stainless steel saucepan, combine the berries and sugar. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly to dissolve sugar. Boil, stirring frequently, until mixture thickens. Remove from heat and test gel. If gel stage has been reached, skim off foam. (You can test the gel stage with a spoon, but the easiest way is to just boil the berries to reach 220 degrees, which ensures a gel stage once it cools - and it worked, too)
Ladle hot jam into hot jars, leaving 1/4 inch headspace. Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace. Wipe rim, center lid, screw band on to fingertip tight.
Place jars in canner, ensuring they are completely covered with water. Bring to a boil and process for 10 minutes. Remove lid. Wait 5 minutes, then remove jars, cool, and store.
Makes about 8 half-pints.