Tips on How to Make Irresistible Homemade Jams

Jul 22, 2020 07:30 AM EDT | By Wyn J. (

Fruit Jam
(Photo: Pixabay)

A nostalgic summer day or autumn freshness -- this is what the sweetness and freshness of jam may remind you of. Or it can simply be the best thing to schmear on top of your sourdough bread, the perfect complement between sweet, sour, and salty. Or you just love a stack of pancakes for breakfast, with blueberry jam smothered in between layers. 

If you want to pull off that good-tasting hearty breakfast every day, then you can never go wrong with buttered toast topped with jams. 

Make your favorite berry preserves at home and top it on your pancakes or toasts. Here are some tips you should try if you want to make the perfect jam

Picking Out the Fruits

To start, pick your favorite fruit for your preserves. Make sure that your favorite fruit is fresh, dry, and underripe. For starters, you can use strawberries and raspberries as these are the best choices to be layered with sugar. Make sure you leave them with sugar for a couple of hours before getting to work. 

Other fruits, such as gooseberries, cherries, currants, and plums, however, needed to be poached before adding the sugar. 

Add Pectin-Rich Fruits

Pectin is a naturally occurring substance that is typically found in berries. This polysaccharide, when mixed with sugar, thickens, which gives jams and jellies that ooey-gooey consistency. 

If the fruit of your choice is low in pectin, you need to add jam sugar and citric acid to your preserves. An example of low-pectin berry is strawberry. Aside from adding jam sugar, you can opt for tossing a fruit rich in pectin such as gooseberries. 

However, if you do not want to add pectin to your jam, some processes skip pectin as an ingredient to their jams. 

Heat Them All Up

After adding pectin to your fruits and berries, set your stove at 104°C. Constantly stir your jam in the pan until you reach the setting point. For you to get that right texture, take note when the fast, frothy, bubbling boil reduces to a much slower boil. It is important to reduce your fruits carefully so that bubbles will disappear. Keep stirring your jam until it achieves a thicker and sticky texture and glossy surface. 

Get Rid of the Scum

A good berry jam does not only rely on the taste, but its consistency also speaks for its deliciousness. To achieve that grandma-good jam, get rid of the scum or trapped air in your jellies. After turning the heat off, continue to stir in the same direction until your jam is reduced. Make sure to follow this step to achieve that thick and gooey consistency of jams. Make sure you altogether remove the froth in your jam quickly. 

Fill Them Up to the Brim!

Make sure that your jars are ready immediately right after you turn off the heat. Make sure you ladle your jams into clean, sterilized, and dry jars. You need to fill your jams up to the brim of the jars when the jam is still over 85°C. 

ALSO READ: How To Make Food Preserves: A Guide for Beginners

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