Sunday we decided to get our strawberry picking done. It was overcast but warm. Perfect for picking. We headed to a strawberry u-pick farm about 10 minutes from us.
We picked 18 quarts of strawberries!
These strawberries were so sweet it was like eating candy. Yummm...............
When we got home we washed all the berries and hulled them...all of them.
And then shared them with the pigs...they LOVE strawberries. (So do chickens by the way ;)
For the jam I used 7 cups of smashed strawberries at a time to make each batch of jam.
This way if something goes wrong all is not lost.
Place a couple quarts of your strawberries in a bowl or pan and smash them with a potato masher.
Measure out 7 cups (give or take) of smashed strawberries and pour into a very large pot.
Then add 4 cups of sugar and 1/4 cup of lemon juice. I do not use pectin, hence the need for lemon juice. Stir and set burner to med-high and bring to a rolling boil.
Boil it down, way down. Stir frequently. You don't want the berries to burn. I keep my stove set to medium-med. high. The strawberries should remain at a rolling boil even when you stir it.
Also, skim off the pink foam. You don't want this in your final product. It is tasty however and my kids like it when I mix it into some whip cream. Super yummy!
I would not leave you strawberries boiling unattended. It will either boil over or burn to the pot. Neither of which is fun to clean up after not to mention the waste of strawberries.
Boil till it reaches to about 215-220 degrees. It should come off the spoon in sheets.
I tried to get the best picture I could...
Have your jars already sterilized and waiting to be filled.
Fill your jars almost to the top leaving 1/4 inch head space. Seal and put into a hot water bath (boiling water) for about ten minutes.
Once their bath is over, remove them and place them on a dishtowel on your counter to cool. You should hear the melodious sound of the seal sucking in. It will sound a bit like a popping noise.
There you have it! All set for the year!
I also made from this batch of strawberries: strawberry syrup and fruit roll ups/leather.