The jam is done. If you want to see how it all started, you can read about it here. This is how I finished it.
Sterilize the jars. That means: wash them in hot soapy water, fill them with hot water and put them in the microwave on high for ten minutes or in the oven at 250 for about half an hour. I use boiling water. You do not have to; boiling water can be scary. We don’t want you to be afraid.
Next, open the fridge and take out the jam you put in there a few days ago, the jam that’s been sitting in its sugar and lemon bath and becoming more and more delicious.
Put it in the lovely copper preserving kettle. While you’re at it, take the top of the two part canning lid (there’s a screw top and a flat sealing part), and put it in a sauce pan with water.
Turn the heat on. As soon as the water begins to boil in the saucepan where you’ve put the lids, turn it off. You don’t want to cook the lids, you want to keep them warm. When the jam begins to boil, turn it down to a simmer. Cook for about 15 minutes. Sometimes the jam is a bit runny. That’s okay. It firms up in the fridge. It is not meant, anyway, to be glutinous.
Can the stuff. That means, put it in the jars using a ladle (there is a special funnel you can get that helps this.) Leave about 1/4 inch of headroom. Wipe the top of the jar with a clean cloth. Screw on the two part lid that comes with all Kerr and Ball canning jars. (If you live in another country, this process will have to be as per the manufacturer’s instructions.) Turn the jars upside down. Set a timer for five minutes. And then turn the jars right side up.
You will notice that, somewhere between ten and thirty minutes later, the jars will make a most satisfying “pop.” If you’ve canned a lot of jars, there will be a lot of popping. This is the sound of the jar sealing. In our small house, when I make jam at night, I can hear the popping all the way up in my bed. I love it.
And that’s it. Except you need to try to keep the jam for the winter and not eat it right then & there, which is what we did with some of it last night. This picture doesn’t really do justice to the color which is a deep … raspberry. Here are some things you can do with jam:
- spoon it over plain yogurt
- spoon it over ice cream
- eat it with a spoon
- use it as a relish with meat
- and, of course, put it on toast