I’ve been craving strawberry jam these days, and although they’re aren’t any crazy good deals on fresh strawberries right now I did find a decent enough price to pick up 2 pounds (2 lb/$5 at Sprouts).
After pureeing the strawberries in the food processor, I was left with 3 1/2 cups of crushed strawberries. The Ball Pectin Calculator didn’t have a conversion for that exact amount, so I upped their quantities a tiny bit to compensate. After mixing together 1 1/3 heaping cups of sugar and 4 slightly rounded tablespoons of RealFruit Instant Pectin, I stirred in the strawberries for 3 minutes. Then I poured the jam into 6 quarter-pint (4-oz) jars and the rest went into a pint jar(14 oz of a 16-oz jar) and let them sit, covered, for 30 minutes. The pint went into the refrigerator and the rest into the freezer.
The jam isn’t as firm as I’d like, but it does have a really fresh strawberry flavor which I like. After I finish this container of instant pectin, I may try cooked freezer jam to see if a different pectin acts differently. I don’t mind the extra work if it results in improved (firmer) texture. Another thing I’d consider is crushing the strawberries with a masher instead of pureeing in the food processor. It might release less liquid and the strawberry chunks would be OK by me.
Cost for this batch
2 lb fresh strawberries: $5.00
Pectin ($.17 to make quarter pint): $1.70
Sugar (1 1/3 cup at $.44 per cup): $0.59
Jars (6 at $.87 per jar)*: $5.22
Total: $12.51 for 38 oz
Compared to my favorite strawberry jam at the store which costs $3.99 for 8.8 oz, this strawberry jam cost me $2.90 per 8.8 oz to make. Savings: $1.09 per 8.8 oz.
*First time using these jars. After this batch, there won’t be the cost of the jars.