Recipes

Homemade Strawberry Jam

Homemade Strawberry Jam

I got the most random appliance for Christmas (I asked for it, btw) — a jelly and jam maker! I absolutely love making homemade jams and jellies and thought I’d share a recipe or two with you guys.

Today I made strawberry jam. It’s the hubby’s favorite and it is so soooo delicious. I like making my own because I don’t have to put nearly as much sugar in it as the store-bought jellies. Plus, it is tastier.

Here’s what you need (yes, real measurements! I know, that’s crazy coming from me.):

  • 2 lbs Strawberries
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1.5 tbsp pectin
  • 3/4 cup sugar

Before I start I should add that this recipe will work on the stove as well. The jam maker is preset to make jam or jelly and has a stirrer in the middle so nothing burns. It’s just a glorified pot. (But it is awesome!)

First, cut up your strawberries into little bits. If you like your jam chunkier, leave some bigger chunks of the fruit.

Next, mash your berries with a potato masher to get some of the juices loose and the strawberries extra squishy.

IMG_0062

Add your strawberries, butter and pectin to your jam maker and turn it on. In my jam maker, the preset time for jam is 21 minutes. If you make it on the stove, cook on medium heat for about the same amount of time.

Side note: I had no idea what pectin was before I started experimenting with my jam maker, so here’s what I’ve learned. Pectin is a natural substance found in apples that helps fruit to gel up. For fruits with a lot of pectin in them, you do not have to add pectin to make the jam or jelly (although it doesn’t hurt). Berries don’t have a lot of pectin, so you need the added stuff. I buy mine on Amazon.

After 4 minutes, add in your sugar. Cover and walk away and let the pot do its work.

Jam

Come back in 21 minutes to a steamy pot full of delicious jam. If you want to can your jam, do it immediately while the jam is still boiling hot and you won’t have to boil your jars to seal them. Simply place your seal and your lid onto the can after it is full, then flip it upside down. The heat from the jar’s contents will seal the jar and make it last for about a year.

The jam will also burn badly if you spill it on yourself. I learned this the hard way after spilling a bunch of boiling peach jam on my hand. Be careful!!!

If you are going to use some right away, plop it into a container and place it in the fridge. Once it is cool, try it out!

jam on toast

(Don’t just my white bread. … It’s what the hubby likes and mine was out :p)

The main reason I am sharing this recipe is that when I got my jelly and jam maker it came with a recipe book. This recipe book called for a ton more pectin (which is expensive) and a TON more sugar. I’m talking three cups. Gross. I think the recipe I have here is a really good one that I plan to use from now on with this jam.

Enjoy!

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Recipes

Homemade Chocolate Pudding/Mousse recipe

Ready. Set. Go. Recipe time!

My coworker recently shared her homemade chocolate pudding recipe with me and I am officially addicted. (Thanks a lot, Rachel!)

I tweaked the recipe a bit, subbing Splenda for the sugar and cooking the pudding on the stove instead of in the microwave… and it is ah-maz-ing. Seriously, you have to make yourself.

… well what are you waiting for?

You only need four ingredients for this pudding (five if you want to turn it into chocolate mousse), so get out your grocery list and jot these down:

  1. 2 1/4 cups of skim milk
  2. 3 tablespoons of flour
  3. 1/2 cup of cocoa powder (unsweetened)
  4. 1/2 cup of Splenda (or sugar… or any other substitute)
  5. cups of cool whip (only for the mousse!!)

Combine your milk, cocoa powder, flour and splenda in a bowl and mix. You need to mix them super well, otherwise you might get chunks in your pudding (ew). I cooked my pudding on the stove on a medium heat, stirring constantly. Once the mixture becomes thick (usually right when it comes to a boil or soon thereafter), take it off the stove and pour it into a bowl. Place it in the refrigerator until it cools down and is ready to eat.

Note: Rachel makes her pudding in the microwave, heating it at 2-minute increments and stirring in between. She said it usually takes her 3 -4 rounds until it’s ready. I tried this first, but I wasn’t crazy about the consistency. Having said that, I didn’t mix all of the powder in that great the first time around. I think that was the real problem. Either way, the microwave or the stove works!!

Here’s where you can spice up your pudding should you choose to do so. Once my pudding was ready to go, I mixed in the 2 cups of cool whip, effectively turning my pudding into chocolate mousse. Yummo.

I topped it with a squirt of whipped cream and a few strawberries from my garden. (Only one strawberry made it to the picture… so guilty!) SO YUMMY.

I took this delicious snack outside on our new patio furniture (pictures of our cute set soon!) and ate my yummy summer snack.

The hubs and the Rems joined me. It was a lovely way to spend part of our evening!

Brian annoyed that I am taking his photo and that his friend is beating him at Scramble with Friends.
“Some of that dessert is mine, right?”

So have you added those ingredients to your grocery list or what?! You won’t be disappointed!

Thanks again for the recipe, Rachel.