Summer is a great time to harvest the freshest picks of apples, strawberries, peaches, and melons. Take these summer fruits with you all year long by turning them into jams. Jams can be used as spreads, yogurts, pancake topping, cocktails ingredient, or even pan sauce for meats. Here is a quick and easy way to make jams at your home.

Step 1: Wash and Prep Your Fruits

After picking the best, wash your fruits. Soak them in saltwater to remove pesticides, small insects, and bacteria hiding in your fruit.

STEP 2: Crush the Fruits

You can choose to completely mash them or leave large chunks for texture. Crushing them releases the fruit’s natural pectin which will help thicken the consistency. Pectins are fruit’s fibers that naturally make the jam thicker.

STEP 3: Knowing the Sugar Level

The amount of sugar will depend on what fruit you are using. The pectin level for each fruit is different so you will need to match this with sugar.

STEP 4:  Start Cooking

Start cooking your mashed fruits for 5 to 10 minutes in medium to high heat. Stir in pectin and check jam consistency. Bring to a full boil but remember to stir often to prevent burning.  After a full boil, pour in additional sugar and wait for another full boil. Check the consistency and taste to know if the jam is ready.  When it’s ready, let it stand for 5 minutes before storage.

STEP 5:  Pour and Set

Warm the jar in the dishwasher before pouring to prevent breakage. Fill the jars with cooked jam and leave ¼ space of the jar. Seal the jars with canning equipment or using the boiling water bath method.  Store and enjoy!

Enjoy memories of summer all year-round with your home-made jams. What will make it even more delicious is the experience of making it.

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