Jam On - It's Strawberry Season

This was so fun to do
and the end results last longer then a loaf of bread
(though having said that, I doubt this batch will last much past Christmas!)

wash, and top your strawberries carefully
pop them in your biggest pan AFTER you've buttered it
like you would a cake tin (without the flour patting)
the buttering just stops it all sticking & makes washing up easier

add 1/2 the strawberry's weight in sugar
you can use caster / jam or  preserving sugar
preserving is best- but if you can't find it add a packet of "Jam Setta" if needs be
add a lemon for approximately every 250g of strawberries
(lemons help cut the sugar, and helps with the setting too)
some recipes call for a lemon's zest too

These lemon sqeezies are the best!
easy peasy lemon squeezy...
I was given 2 last year for Christmas,
and have enough love and use for both of them. 
(it helps that I don't like to wash up)

add no more than an inch of water, and slooowly cook it. 
The slower it cooks, the more pectin (natures setting agent) come out of the fruit also, stir AS LITTLE as possible... you want those chunks.

No stirring, but as you go along you will need to 'de-scum' the jam
a frothy white surface will form on the jam
use a slotted spoon to gather in to one place and skim it off.
(it doesn't look good in the jar & has a different texture.)

Meanwhile, you need to serialize your jam jars
a few theories - some say the top shelf of the dishwasher on HOT works, as long as they are used HOT fresh out the dish washer.
I did this (a re wash)...
and then put them in the oven for bake at 180C for a minimum of 20 minutes...
(again, take them out as you need them keeping the rest hot)
 better safe than sorry with bacteria and all that.

after 45 minutes of slow cooking the strawberries,
its time to 'set up' the jam fast boil them for 10 minutes,
and then 'wrinkle test' it: 

pop a plate in the freezer,
and when its cold add one teaspoon of the hot jam to it
see if it set. 
It should (after it cools) wrinkle a little like this crappy picture
if it doest turn the heat back up, fast boil for another 5-10 minutes and try again. 

I also wore bright happy yellow granny shoes while I cooked to help things along.   I'm almost certain they made a difference. 

Its been 4 days since I made the Jam and we've already started on our second jar...