Friday, April 8, 2011

Cold days are perfect for making Jam!!!!!!

Apricot Jam
 Proverbs 31:27-28
"She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her"
I think all women would like to be like the Proverbs 31 woman, but she does so many things so tirelessly that it often seems impossible. Well, two things I can do..... I can speak well of my husband (it's pretty hard on most days NOT to- He is a man of integrity and wisdom who makes me feel loved and protected, an excellent father, and a man after God's heart) and, I can choose not to "eat the bread of idleness"....other breads are apparently acceptable, so I'm good with that!!!!!! Really, I think in our society REST is more of an issue, but if you want something  fun and easy that will  earn the praises of your family.....TRY THIS!!!

Let me begin by saying that every PB&J we have around here is put together with homemade jam.....all other forms are simply it is NOT DIFFICULT!!!!!!!
Growing up, my aunt always made homemade jam for my family- she lived in Utah and we would come home with several large jars full of the most wonderful apricot....and RRRrrrrrrraspberry jam (which is my personal favorite!!!!!!). However, until I met my husband, jam creation was a magical mystery to me (not to be confused with the Magical Mystery Tour).....but my Mama-in-law is a wonderful jam maker....she still supplies us with her homegrown, homemade blackberry jam.....which is my other FAVORITE!!!!
She let me watch as she made jam and showed me how truly undaunting the task is!!!
Now, you are going to say that the process of making the jam may be easy, but what about the CANNING?!?!??!
Well, I will let you in on a little secret.....if you start with freshly cleaned jars and lids.......they actually SEAL THEMSELVES....I know, that sounds crazy, but if you fill them with extremely hot jam (no one said there wasn't any danger in jam-making!!!!) the jars begin to seal with a POP as they sit on the counter...I am serious!!!!!
But you have to use real canning jars!!!
My Mama-in-law likes to give jam in beautiful old pieces of Early American pressed glass and she seals her jam with a paraffin wax seal which you can do if you want to be clever and creative, but that is farrrrr too much work for today, so you'll have to settle for my fill and seal method for today!!!!
So, here goes:
Buy a package of fruit pectin....I like Ball brand the best...Follow the instructions for the fruit, juice and sugar requirements in this case, 5 cups o frozen apricots from our tree last year......
thaw it out in warm water if you're in a hurry....and who isn't????

1 package of pectin
measure out 7 cups of sugar
Note: sugar makes me smile!!!!
1/4 cup of lemon juice....this is close enough.....

and what recipe would be complete without butter???
1 t. butter (not much, but it cuts down on foam...- you'll see)
Start by adding your fruit and lemon juice to a large pan and sprinkle the pectin over it as above....
Allow it to come to a full rolling below...
stir in a little "pat" of butter (not sure why it should be called a "pat")......

then add your sugar all at once- it will seem like a lot.......
but it will quickly disappear...
but you will have to stir constantly till it comes to a full rolling boil.......

Boil like this for 60 seconds...set your timer- it is important- otherwise the jam is too runny- and if you boil too long it is too's a fine line!!!!!!
Then take your measuring cup that has no visible measurements and CAREFULLY scoop out hot jam

fill jars immediately...screw lids on working quickly....
Enjoy the FRUITS of your labor on some lovely toast!!!!


  1. Thanks for the time saver tip, Tonya....I didn't know that and love shortcuts. I am inspired....we need some homemade jam, as well.

  2. it just happened one time when i was hurriedly making a batch....pretty cool, huh? What kind are you making????