Homemade jam is so delicious and very simple to make, all you need is equal parts fruit and sugar. Soft fruits are ideal, such as strawberries, blackcurrants, raspberries or blackberries.
- 3 clean 300ml/10fl oz jars with lids
- Wide mouth preserving pan or large saucepan
- A couple of saucers (for testing the jam)
- Jam funnel (optional)
- 450g/1lb of fresh fruit
- 450g/1lb granulated sugar
*This quantity is to produce three 300ml/10fl oz jars
Jars must be cleaned before pouring jam into the jars. To clean the jars please follow the instructions below.
- Preheat the oven to 140C/275F/Gas.
- Wash the jars well in warm soapy water then rinse thoroughly under running water.
- Leave the jars and lids to dry, upside down, in the oven for a couple of minutes. (Or you can clean the jars by putting them through the hot cycle of a dishwasher.)
- Place a few saucers in the freezer to chill. These will be used to test if the jam has reached setting point.
- Place your choice of soft fruit and sugar into a wide-mouth preserving pan (or large saucepan) over a very low heat, stirring occasionally until all the sugar has completely dissolved. It’s important to have the heat low so the sugar dissolves rather than melts and sticks to the pan.
- Bring the fruit mixture to a rapid, rolling boil (when the bubbles cannot be calmed down by stirring with a spoon). Cook for 3-5 minutes until the jam reaches setting point. As your jam approaches setting point, it will thicken and start to boil more slowly, with thicker and heavier bubbles.
- To test if the jam has reached setting point, first remove the pan from the heat while you test the jam (this is very important so the jam doesn’t continue cooking). Spoon a little of the jam onto a chilled saucer and leave to cool for a few minutes. Then push your finger into the jam, if it wrinkles it is ready. If not, return to the pan to the heat and cook the jam for a minute or two before testing again.
- When the jam has reached setting point, carefully ladle the mixture into your sterilised jars (a sterilised jam funnel can be used to make the job easier). Once near enough full secure the lids onto the jars, while the jam is still hot. The jam will thicken as it cools and the seal on the jars should dip. Just in case a jar doesn’t seal, store it in the fridge and use the jam within a couple of weeks.
- Sealed jars can be kept in the cupboard for months, although after six months the flavour begins to deteriorate.
Enjoy your homemade jam with freshly baked scones and clotted cream, and of course a cup of tea.