As one starts to pickle, she begins to feel more brazen about canning. Maybe death isn’t imminent from ptomain poisoning. Maybe I can do this! What else can I try?
For me the next step was jam. Hubs grandmother has given us her jam before, and it is always so tasty. I find an age old recipe for strawberry jam that is not too intimidating, where else? The Farmers Almanac! We grow a small crop of strawberries in our Victory Garden, so the first step is to harvest what I can, and I purchase the rest.
These lilliputian strawberries are my favorite. What they lack in size they make up for in cuteness and perfect shape.
They need to be hulled and mashed. I have a lot of old kitchen utensils that I love to use. That is actually an old potato masher. Thanks Mom!
Next we mix in the sugar and cook the fruit mixture. Mmmmm, healthy!
Now we use all the canning equipment and other ingredients. This includes the most essential piece-the beer. This does not go into the jam. This goes into my mouth.
We have been sterilizing the jars to prevent death. This is the new jar grabber that came with my canning kit.
This is my old one. It was a promotional item given away by the garage Bertone and Bowen, complete car service. Fun stuff, right?
Now the fruit is cooked, the jars are sterilized, and it is time to rush the concoction into the jars and the jars into the canning bath for 10 minutes before they become contaminated by some sort of deadly virus. Man, those canning people sure scare you when it comes to sterilizing! I’m all about it, but the Black Plague part scares the you-know-what out of me!
Now it cools and you anxiously await the POP! I anxiously await 5 POPS! actually. The wait is long, as this fruit is incredibly hot!
I steal a canning label from a World War 2 propaganda poster about canning and make it my own. After 60 years isn’t it public domain anyway? And voila! Jam!
Making jam was kind of like making pickles or dilly beans. Sterilizing, cooking for 10 minutes, cooling…….now that I have the hang of it, who knows?
p.s- if your jam is a little runny, add a bit of Sure Jell next time.