I love jam and preserves! I love that there are chunks of fruit still in them and that it isn’t completely puréed. I’m a texture girl and I like my food to have some. That’s not to say I don’t love creamy, smooth foods. Pastry cream and whipped cream are totally smooth texture free foods I adore. I’m not sure if they can really be considered food, but I’m pretty sure I could live off of them! Anywho back to jam and preserves. Last week I had a huge box of strawberries from Costco that were on the verge of becoming too ripe. Normally I freeze them and use them in smoothies like this super healthy and yummy Strawberry Spinach Smoothie. But this time I wanted to do something different with them, so I thought why not make some Easy Strawberry Jam.
I decided to make this Easy Strawberry Jam similar to what I made as a gift for all of the guests at our wedding. It seems only right that a food blogger would make something edible for wedding guests, don’t you think? And by right I mean slightly insane (that was a lot of jam)! I made a huge batch of strawberry jam for our wedding and packaged it up in tiny jars with a little label on it announcing the date of our wedding. They turned out really cute, but I have to admit I haven’t made a whole lot of jam since then. I think making 60 jars of jam, filling, and labeling each jar kind of got me burnt out on the stuff.
Lately though, I’ve had a hankering for some good homemade jam to spread on toast or add to my Greek yogurt, and those overripe strawberries sitting in my fridge were perfect for jam making! To make the jam I chopped up four cups of strawberries and poured them into a large saucepan. I added three tablespoons of sugar (use more if you like your jam sweeter or if your strawberries aren’t very sweet), two teaspoons of cornstarch, the juice of half a lemon, and a pinch of salt. I stirred everything together until the cornstarch was completely incorporated and then brought the mixture to a boil. Once it started to boil I reduced the heat to medium low and let it simmer for about 15 minutes. After 15 minutes had passed I took my potato masher and mashed up the strawberries, making sure I still had some nice chunks of berry remaining. I let the jam simmer for another 10-15 minutes until it had thickened and then off the heat I added the good stuff. I added in a teaspoon of vanilla extract and a quarter teaspoon of almond extract. The vanilla and almond gave the jam a sweetness that sugar just can’t add. This recipe makes enough jam to fill two pint size jars. You can store the jam in the fridge for a couple of weeks or you can freeze it for a few months until you are ready to use it. This strawberry jam is amazing mixed in with yogurt, topped over vanilla ice cream, served with a piece of angel food cake, smothered on toast or biscuits, I could seriously go on and on. The next time you need some jam try making this Easy Strawberry Jam, for minimal effort your get a deliciously sweet result!