Put empty mason jars in water bring them to a boil for about 10 mins to sterilize and heat them up to prevent the jar from cracking later when you add hot liquid to it.
Top the strawberries and wash them in cold water. I use a food processor for a smoother consistency. If you want chunky don't process as much, or use a potato masher and crush by hand.
Process to desired consistency. One full processor container is about 2.5 lbs of berries. If you have extra cut then up sprinkle with sugar and enjoy later.
Pour the strawberries into a large pot and add the pectin (available at most grocery stores). Use less if you want runny jelly, use more if you like it thicker. I use 4.5 tablespoons.
I use Ball brand low or no- sugar pectin... But i still add the sugar 😀
Turn the heat on high and stir to incorporate the pectin.
You can add the butter (keeps the foaming down so you don't have to skim it later) and lemon juice (citric acid is a preservative) any time. If you skip butter you may need to skim foam before canning
Have your sugar ready, you won't want to waste time measuring it out when the time comes, it could easily burn, and ruin the batch.
Add the mason jar kids to water in a small pot and put it on low. You want to heat them, but not boil. This softens the rubber seal around the edge.
Add the sugar... Dump it all in at once be careful not to splash!!!
Stir!! Stir!! Stir!! Watch out for splashing, this is like liquid magma now, you don't want to get it on you.
Once the sugar dissolves it will turn a nice ruby red color.
Once it starts boiling, time it for 1 minute yes. One minute...
Once the minute is up, remove from heat. Using jar tongs carefully remove the mason jars from the boiling water. Turn the heat down to avoid splashes but you will need to boil it again.
Get your jar funnel and a ladle. Try to minimize the distance you need to move the ladle to avoid a sticky cleanup!
Spoon in the jam. You want to fill it to within 1/4 inch of the lip of the jar. Resist the urge to grab the jar while filling, it's HOT!
Filled. Now move on to the next jar until they are full.
You need a wet paper towel and something to hold the hot jars with. Ove' glove works well for this.
Carefully wipe the lip of the jar with the wet paper towel. This removes any spillage you may have, and cleans the lip for the lid to fit and seal properly.
Using a lid lifter (a magnet on a stick) remove the lids and place them on the jars.
Ready to add the rings.
Screw down the rings "finger right" again careful you don't burn your fingers it's still HOT. Tighten but don't over-tighten the rings.
With the jar tongs place them back into the almost boiling water.
Be careful you don't splash and burn yourself!
All the jars in the pot, you want the water to come 1-2 inches over the tops of the jars. Turn the heat up and once it starts to boil set the timer for 5 minutes.
After 5 minutes if boiling use the jar tongs and remove from the water.
I place mine on a drying towel. You will notice a popping sound as they cool off. This is the lid sealing down. Once they cool off you should press on the center of the lids.
If you press on the lid you shouldn't hear or feel any clicking or popping. If you do, the seal didn't take, just put that jar in the fridge and use it within 3 weeks or so.
Properly sealed they can be stored for about a year. Once opened you should use within a few weeks, other than the lemon juice there aren't any preservatives.
Carefully push the hot water away from the edge if the stove. Leave the lid cracked and let it humidify your air while its cooling off.
Once the jars cool off, you can decorate with fabric or ribbon if you want.
- 2 - 2 1/2 lbs fresh strawberries
- 5 cups sugar
- 4-5 tablespoons pectin
- 1/4 cup lemon juice (optional)
- 1 teaspoon butter (optional)
- Caning supplies, jar tongs
- 6 1/2 pint mason jars