Over the weekend Glen and I went to our local pick your own farm and came home with some Strawberries and Gooseberries. With an abundance of fruit and an unused jam making set the my mum got me for my birthday (back in February) it was time to get my jam on.
I have never made jam before and had no idea what a Gooseberry tested like, I’ve just always liked the thought of making Gooseberry jam. So bearing that in mind I went into the local field to have a look for some elderflowers to put with the Gooseberries, as I know I like their flavour. June is the best time to get Elderflowers, well nearly the only time as they don’t come out for long, so going looking in July I wasn’t going to bring home much but I didn’t need that many. Amazingly there were a few blossoms left out, just enough for what I needed!
(Yup, that’s right. I went out in public in my gardening dress, with my gardening basket, and took my shoes off to walk on the grass. I did leave the hat at home though.)
For the recipe I went to my beloved Pintrest for help and I found this http://www.womanandhome.com/recipes/532272/gooseberry-and-elderflower-jam-recipe (my hyperlink button is currently deciding not to work).
The recipe asks for 1.3kg of berries and 1.6kg of sugar. I only had just under 1kg of berries so I used 1kg of sugar, and I think this ratio worked out well. The recipe suggested using caster sugar but I choose to use Jam sugar, jam sugar has an extra ingredient called pectin that helps the fruit to set into jam.
It may not look that appetizing but it tasted awesome in the end, well I think so. I did try to strain the jam to make it nice and smooth but that just turned into a sticky mess, maybe next time I will use a sieve and not muslin cloth. Ah well, we live and learn. And I know also know that this mixture doesn’t really need to be interfered with, the fruit boiled down nicely and came out quite smooth.
Today I made a start on the strawberries. The jam sugar packet has a recipe for making strawberry jam so I thought I’d give it a try.
This worked really well. I didn’t try to sieve this batch but it might need it in the future (as you can tell I prefer smooth jam), I think. I didn’t eat as much of this batch during it’s making, probably because I didn’t get it all over my hands. I did trawl my way through Pintrest for some tips, like if you can make homemade smooth jam, and one site suggested putting a potato masher through the mix to make it smoother. I can confirm that it worked, even after boiling the fruit down it still quite firm.
I just thought I’d share these pics with you. The strawberries looked amazing in the bowl before I cut them up. I couldn’t believe how fantastic they looked once the lemon juice was on them and they started to heat up.
And there you have it, that is all the jam that my hard work made. I really enjoyed making it though and I am looking forward to the blackberries coming into season.
Thank you for reading. Happy jamming x
(P.S. The feature pic was found on Google.)