Sunday, January 23, 2011

Strawberry Jam

Disclaimer #1:  I have never made jam before.

Disclaimer #2:  I googled "how to make strawberry jam" and this recipe was the first to pop up.

Disclaimer #3:  I am in the middle of a wild-eyed, wooden spoon-worthy fit.  I should just go put myself in the corner.


The jam recipe I found here.  It calls for 2 pounds of strawberries.  I only had a frozen 10-ounce bag which I defrosted overnight.  I adjusted the amounts of the other ingredients to compensate for not having enough berries.

Truthfully, it's a little runny.  But that could be because it's only been in the fridge for about 2 hours.  Or, more than likely, I just goofed. 

And the fit?  Well, I am trying to teach myself how to take appealing pictures of food.  AND IT IS SO HARD.  Most of the time I only have one chance at a shot, and I have to move quickly because little people are closing in on me and my props.  Today I am learning about apeture, shutter speeds, ISOs, and depth-of-focus.  And now I cannot take a single stinkin' decent picture.  My brain feels like it's been in the blender.

So, please excuse the bad photos.  You are probably giving me more grace than I'm giving myself.  But thank you for having faith in me:  I promise I will learn how to take some good pictures that have equal exposure and appetizing appeal.

In the meantime...


After this point, you need to add sugar and lemon juice.

Put it in a saucepan and boil.
(Keep the lid on.  It will splatter and make a sticky mess.)

If you are going to store it, you have to do some additional steps. 
(See recipe below.)

If you are just going to refrigerate it and eat it within a few days,
just put it in a jar.

Here's my adjusted-amount recipe.

It makes a little over a cup of jam.

Strawberry Jam
1 10-ounce frozen bag of strawberries, defrosted (or of course, use ripe, fresh berries if you have them)
1.25 cups sugar
1/8 cup lemon juice

Mash the berries and place in a heavy-bottomed saucepan.  Add sugar and lemon juice.  Stir over low heat until sugar is dissolved.  Increase heat to high, and bring the mixture to a full rolling boil. Boil, stirring often, until the mixture reaches 220 degrees F. Transfer to hot sterile jars, leaving 1/4 to 1/2 inch headspace, and seal. Process in a water bath. If the jam is going to be eaten right away, don't bother with processing, and just refrigerate.

P.S. If you have a good jam recipe, I'd be most obliged if you would share it with me.  Leave it in the comments or email me at


Heather-Gathering Spriggs said...

1. yes. you are harder on yourself than you give yourself credit for!
2. behind every great (food) photographer is a great photo editing program. PROMISE ROMISE
its SO easy to make your photos go from blah to ta-dah!

have you tried picnik?
the main editing tools i use are "curves" and color balance, esp for indoor photographs. with curves you can adjust the highlights and shadows and then tweak the color just a bit (usually i add more blue or cyan for indoor shots since they usually tend toward the warm/yellow scale_
i have a blogging friend who calls herself a photographer, has been featured in magazines and sells her photographs on etsy and she only uses an older model point and shoot and picnik!! (there is power in the edit)

3. YOU ARE TOO HARD ON YOURSELF. Dear fellow perfectionist. cuz I think your images are just perfect. your camera is amazing!! im jealous.

4. Dont give yourself a headache over aperture settings. Its not worth it. I took an entire semester of photography and can't remember much at all. And hated every minute of it (esp. developing my own film in a dark room... rolling film on a reel in complete darkness trying not to step on it, trip, faint, hyperventilate, or open the door accidently).

5. Go take a hot bath and relax and drink a bottle of grace ... from me to you.

Ginny said...

Thank you so much. I use picnik all the time. (Thanks for telling me about it!) But I barely have time to take pictures in the first place, let alone edit the photos before I upload them. I'm trying to get my SOOC (straight-out-of-camera) shots as good as possible. And it's aggravating because my camera is like a spaceship and I only know how to ride a bike. But I am learning!!!

Wildly digging through the cabinets trying to find the bottle of grace....