This is our first ever attempt at making jam, and we're excited to announce that it went extremely well! For some reason, probably like many other people, we thought jam was going to be exceptionally difficult to make! In reality, it can pretty much be boiled down to a fairly simple step-by-step process.
Couple of things to note if you're going to try this recipe: feel free to change the strawberries to rhubarb ratio according to your taste (more strawberries will make it sweeter, rhubarb more tart). Also, we went all natural - it is important to know that if you’re not going to use pectin (a gel that firms it up), you need a lot of sugar in order to get your jam to gel (something else to keep in mind when you're deciding on your strawberry rhubarb ration since strawberries are already sweet naturally). Other than that, you should be able to make some seriously scrumptious jam with the below recipe! Bottle it in mason jars and give out to friends or family, or preserve for future use.
(Note: If you've never used rhubarb before - check out our post last month for Strawberry Rhubarb Pie, with more information on what rhubarb is, what to look for, how to use it, and more.)
- 5 cups rhubarb (about 3 large stalks), cut into 1⁄2" cubes
- 2 cups hulled and halved strawberries (about 1 pint)
- 2 1⁄4 cups sugar
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice (from about half of a large lemon)
- Remove both ends of the rhubarb first. Then chop it up into about 1/2 inch pieces. Core and slice your strawberries as desires (halved or sliced finer).
- Place the rhubarb into a medium sized sauce pan and add sugar. It will need to set in the sugar for about 2 hours.
- Once the rhubarb has candied a bit, place it in a medium to large saucepan with the remaining ingredients over medium heat. Once the mixture starts to bubble, reduce the heat to medium low (you want it to continue to bubble slightly, but not violently when stirred).
- Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the jam has thickened (this may take up to an hour).
- While the jam is cooking, boil your jam jars, rings and lids to sterilize them, then run the rings and glass jars through the dishwasher on a quick cycle.
- Have a very large covered pot of boiling water ready. There needs to be enough water in the pot so that when the filled jars are submerged, they're covered by at least 1" of water.
- Transfer sterilized jars, lids, and bands to a clean surface.
- Fill each jar with hot jam, leaving at least 1⁄4" of space at the top. Place lids on jars, and secure ring bands. Secure just tight enough so that they are hand tightened but you can easily unscrew.
- Place the filled jars into pot of gently boiling water, let boil for 10 minutes to set the jam. Transfer hot jars to a cool, clean surface and let stand undisturbed for 24 hours. (You should hear the seals on the lids pop pretty soon after removing from the water.)
- Refrigerate and used within 2 weeks. Sealed jars will keep, in a cool, dark place, for up to a year.