I've posted before about how much I love Pomona's Pectin. I've always loved to make jam but I do not like the amount of sugar most jams call for - I like to taste the fruit not just sugar. I've made a freezer jam for years with dried pineapple as the sweetener but this year E wanted to make strawberry freezer jam "like Gramma's". Who can resist that??
So, I told him how much sugar goes into regular freezer jam and we agreed that we would use Pomona's to make a sweet jam with sugar (rather than dried pineapple)but with a lot less sugar. He made one batch (4 cups strawberries to 1 cup sugar) tested it out and was delighted with it.
The next day he easily convinced me to help him make another batch - a double batch this time. It literally takes minutes and then he was filling jars to tuck in the freezer with his year's supply of strawberry jam.
How to explain how much I love that my kids can do this...it truly fills my heart with joy. I have a feeling when I look back on all the things my kids "learned" at home with me during these growing up, home-learning years that this - this knowledge of how food grows and what to do with it - will be what stays with me and what I'm most pleased they learned.
Since we had so many strawberries (my husband did point out that no one else was leaving the berry farm with 12 buckets full in order to illustrate my craziness, I think, but I know he'll be asking me in the next couple days if I am ready to go picking again because we are all looking forward to try the other even sweeter variety of berries on the other side of the field!) I decided to try out Jamie Oliver's Quickest Strawberry Jam. It is delicious and we've decided to keep the jarful in the fridge to use a sauce on icecream and yogurt this week as well as for jam.
I have many memories of waking up for school on June mornings to the smell of my mom making strawberry jam. I would come down to the kitchen and there would be a plate of strawberry "foam" that I loved putting on my toast. I was thrilled to make this jam and be able to skim the foam for my boys.
Such a simple thing but such a treasured memory because it reminds me of how lucky I was to grow up in a home where these simple pleasures mattered and yet were also so every day.