16 June 2014

Homemade Strawberry Jam

My family just returned from a holiday to Cameron Highlands and Ipoh in Malaysia. I must say it was a great trip; lots to see, lots to eat and most importantly dear son enjoyed himself tremendously. (Hopefully I will blog about it soon coz I still have a few backlogs of overseas trips :p).

When we were in Cameron Highlands, we went crazy over strawberries (but, of course). Besides picking our own strawberries, we also bought a few boxes for consumption. In fact, we bought too much. Well, the strawberries were going for a song, RM10 per box of 500-600g, and 3 boxes for RM25. They were big and red and looked too tempting :p. I think all in all, we got 5 boxes (including 1 box self-picked). After feasting hard for a few days, there was still almost 1 box left. Not wanting to waste, I brought the strawberries back.

But by the time we got home (3-4 days after buying), most of the strawberries had over-ripened and turned mushy (didn't take care during the travelling :p). The only way to salvage is to turn them into strawberry jam.

Had to cook them quickly less they turned bad so I just made do with whatever ingredients I had at home.
Really like Wendy's (Table for 2... or more) recipe as she added green apple for additional flavoring and texture. Instead of green apple, I added red apple coz I only had 1 red apple left in the fridge, and I guess the sweetness from the apple could also make up for the lower amount of sugar I added (ran out of sugar).

Managed to yield 1 medium bottle and 3 small bottles of jam. Gave the 3 small bottles to my mum and MIL and kept the medium one for our own consumption.

Look at richness of the ruby red jam, all natural, without adding any preservatives or colouring!

Homemade Strawberry Jam
(with reference from Table for 2... or more and Simply Sweet'n Savory)
  • 400g strawberries
  • 1 red apple
  • 1 lemon
  • 230g sugar

  • Place a small plate in the freezer (will be using it to test whether the jam is set later).
  • Wash the strawberries thoroughly, hull and cut into halves or quarters. Set aside.
  • Peel and grate the apple. Set aside.
  • Zest and juice the lemon. Set aside.
  • In a stainless steel pot, combine strawberries, grated apple, lemon zest, lemon juice and sugar. Cook on medium low heat until sugar has dissolved completely and strawberries softened. Mash the strawberries using potato masher or back of spoon.
  • Increase the heat to medium high and bring mixture to boil. Continue boiling to thicken the mixture, stirring occasionally. Skim off any foam that rises to the surface with a spoon.
  • The jam will start to feel spongy (listen to the sound of jam boiling and bubbles formed become smaller). Each time you stir the jam, it will splatter quite vigorously.
  • Turn off heat and test for setting.
  • Put a teaspoon of jam on the prepared cold plate. Drag a chopstick across. If jam is ready, the parting made by the chopstick will remain open. If it closes, a little more cooking is required.
  • If jam is not set, turn on heat and cook again for a few more minutes before testing again. *I prefer my jam to be slightly gel-like and not too hard (the parting made by the chopstick closes very slowly).
  • Once jam is ready, let it cool down for 5 to 10 minutes before spooning it into sterilised jars.
  • Leave to cool at room temperature. Once cooled, cover and store in fridge.

The jam was really yummy! I couldn't resist eating it directly :p It was not too sweet and had a very fragrant fruity flavour from both the strawberries and apple, and a slight tartness from the lemon. Kudos to homemade jam!

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