Bribery Jam

Tomorrow will be a scorcher in the PNW, so I thought of a quick bribe used my time wisely for another GOOD EATS post. Today is a rainy “ugh” day, so I got busy in the kitchen. If I tell my sons* what I am doing, chances increase immeasurably that I may see them…

First, a note about jam making. I have tried sugar free recipes, liquid pectin, powdered pectin, lemon juice, no lemon juice, and several others searching for a healthy jam. (Is that an oxymoron?) I have made cooked jam, refrigerator jam, and freezer jam. I have used mixers, blenders, mashers, and just about every kitchen utensil available. I tried the following recipe a few years ago and have never gone back. It’s my no fail/no fuss (but plenty of mess) recipe.

Arguably, some may think making this jam is a huge ordeal. Either I am used to it or I have a fever, but I set it all out ahead of time and it goes quickly.

recipe_june 2016Starting with the best from a farm around the corner, these berries were picked yesterday and are indescribably sweet. In the SIX hallocks only that I used for this double batch, I threw out the equivalent of half a berry. That’s it. The cost of a day old flat in these parts is a full $10.00 less per flat than for a full price, picked today flat. I can live with that.

As stated, it’s an easy 1:1 ratio.

I know. It does seem like a lot of sugar. A lot. That’s probably because it is. A lot. However, when I think of the preservatives–no pun intended–in the commercially made jams and jellies, not to mention a lack of flavor, I have to believe this is better. Two ingredients. Are you smiling yet?

I try to set out everything I think I may need ahead of time:

OK, here we go:

jam one_june 2016 (4)
berries are crushed with a potato masher

Berries are fully crushed and sugar is added. I use my pressure cooker pot to cook the jam. That is my preference since I have a strong dislike for hot jam splatter.

I took a video of this next part because it is essential to the success of the recipe. We may be tempted to avoid that rolling boil, but this is key: the jam needs to maintain a rolling boil while stirred. I time this for 15-20 minutes (depending on how thick it feels after 15 min.).

Meanwhile, I’ve had my water bath heating on the stove top.

jam two_june 2016 (3)The recipe states that at this point, the jam can be ladled into hot jars, sealed, and flipped over on the counter. I do not follow this part of the recipe. I place my sealed jars in the water bath–the water has to cover the jars–and cook for 15 minutes (boiling water bath).

This step DOES NOT OVERCOOK the jam. I was afraid it might, but it does not.

jam two_june 2016 (1)
lovely, messy, gooey jam

After the jam has cooked for 15 minutes in the water bath, I take them out and place on a towel or cutting board to cool. I always cover the jars with a towel.

Β The boys have been warned. We’ll see who shows up for some of mom’s bribery jam.

Make that briberry jam. πŸ˜‰

*I am an Even-Steven type of mother and have not forgotten my daughter. She does not eat jam. Coffee and chocolate work with her. πŸ˜‰

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