Strawberry and Raspberry jam… sigh. There is nothing like homemade, is there? Every summer we love going strawberry picking and making our own jam and this summer was no different! In this recipe, I’ve combined strawberries and raspberries to produce a combination of my two favourite jams – strawberry and raspberry jam! You can of course just make one or the other.
Like pastry and macarons, jam making is sometimes regarded with a certain amount of trepidation. Honestly, I think it’s all a conspiracy (!) to make amateurs think that it’s more difficult than it is! With jam making, all you need is the fruit, sugar and some sterilized jars. With regards to the setting, etc, this is what you need to remember – generally, the sweeter the fruit, the less pectin it contains. So, strawberries aren’t going to have a lot of it, you therefore compensate by adding a little bit of lemon juice and/or sugar that has pectin added to it. I like my jams to have a soft set rather than the hard gel like consistency. However, if you like yours to have a thicker/harder consistency, sugar with added pectin will suffice.
Thermometer or no thermometer? That’s up to you. I don’t own a kitchen thermometer, as I grew up never using one, I don’t feel the need for it today just because all the cookbooks and celebrity chefs say you have to have one! How to tell if your jam has reached setting point? Place a saucer in the fridge before you start making your jam. After the stated time in the recipe, drop a small amount on the saucer, give it a few seconds and give it a nudge with your finger. Has it set, is it wrinkling? Then it’s good to go!
The pot? A large, deep casserole dish or saucepan will do very nicely, there is no need to get a special jam pot.
Note: I’ve used 1.5kg sugar in total and this produces a very sweet jam which I love. Reduce the normal sugar to 800g if you don’t want it overly sweet.