Making jam was an absolute staple of summer when I was growing up in Nova Scotia. We would pick strawberries, eating a few along the way, and then cut rhubarb from my Grandmother’s backyard patch. The strawberries then seemed to be a lot juicier and larger than the ones we get today, and the rhubarb patch grew like weeds. My Grandma was just glad to see someone enjoy the abundant rhubarb stalks.
My sisters and I would help Mom by washing and slicing the fruit in preparation for the jam making process. Our fingers would be permanently red-stained from hulling the strawberries and I can still remember the tang of the rhubarb pieces in my mouth. We would make several batches and give jars of jam to family, friends and neighbours. I especially loved a piece of homemade bread made by my mom’s friend, slathered in butter and cold strawberry rhubarb jam. We’ve been known to pour a little over vanilla ice cream, I’ve even heard tell of neighbours using this as the centre for homemade doughnuts!
This is an easy recipe and once you’ve made it, you’ll be whipping up a batch any time you have abundant fruit.
You will need:
- 2 ½ cups crushed hulled strawberries (about 5 cups whole)
- 2 ½ cups chopped rhubarb
- 1 package of fruit pectin crystals (I now use the light version)
- 2 ¾ cups granulated white sugar
How to prepare:
Pour strawberries and rhubarb into large Dutch oven. Combine 1 package of light fruit pectin crystals with ¼ cup of the sugar; stir into pan. Bring to a rolling boil over high heat, stirring always. Stir in remaining sugar and bring to rolling boil. Boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Continue stirring for about 5-7 minutes to prevent fruit from floating, skimming off foam.
Using a sterilized funnel, pour cooked jam into hot sterilized 1 cup canning jars, leaving ¼ inch space. Wipe rims with a clean cloth before covering with hot lids; gently screwing on bands until tight.
Heat seal process in the boiling water canner for 10 minutes. Remove jars and let cool for 24 hours (I like to set mine on the window sill on a clean dish towel for 24 hours without turning). Ensure the seal of the lids has curved downward. (If not, refrigerate and use within 3 weeks.) Store for up to a year in a cool, dry place and preferably a dark place.