Berries are the fruit of summer in Britain, and the glorious heatwave we have had has meant berries are plentiful – perfect for making lots of jams for the autumn and winter months. There are strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, cherries, elderflowers, gooseberries and more to go foraging for in your country clothing, so you can have loads of fruity desserts, cakes and anything else you fancy!
We have put together an infographic guide for making strawberry jam. It doesn’t require fancy equipment, just a few ingredients and nifty tips, and means you can make the most of flavoursome seasonal summer fruit all year round. Homemade jams and preserves also make for great gifts, especially when you have a surplus.
If you want to try making jam with other fruits, the recipe above is very much the same, with a few differences to get you started:
For raspberry jam, you need 1kg raspberries, 1kg jam sugar with pectin added, and juice of 1 lemon. You will also need to mash the berries to a pulp and strain them through a sieve, so you are left with the seeds and juice. If you are not a fan of the seeds, you can use a finer sieve.
For gooseberry jam, which has a tangier flavour than strawberry or raspberry, you need 1kg gooseberries, topped and tailed, juice of half a lemon and 1kg granulated sugar. Gooseberry jam requires a gentle heat for cooking, as you don’t want the sugar to crystallise. Once the sugar has dissolved, bring the mixture to boil for 10 minutes, skimming the surface as you go. The jam turns a pink hue when it cooks.
If you want to make blackberry jam, you need 1.8kg blackberries, 1½kg sugar with added pectin and juice of 1 lemon. Like strawberry jam, mix the berries and sugar and leave overnight to help the sugar start to dissolve. Start cooking the blackberries over low heat to dissolve the sugar then bring to a boil and simmer for five minutes.
Testing if your jam has set is the same for each fruit – place a plate in the fridge before you start cooking to chill it. When you have finished cooking the jam, spoon a little of it onto the cold plate. Leave for 30 seconds, then push with your finger; if it wrinkles and doesn’t flood to fill the gap, it is ready.