While at my daughter’s house this past August we took my 2 grandsons to pick raspberries at the orchards owned by the Shaw family in Maryland. This orchard has quite a few different types of U-Pick veggies and fruits. Right now they are hot and heavy into apples and other fall fruits. While picking raspberries last month, we had a wonderful time tasting, picking and planning what we would make with them. The boys were really good about picking more than they ate but our little guy just barely picked enough to make it worth our while to let him pick and he eventually ended up on mom’s back snoozing.
We decided to eat fresh berries for dessert and breakfast and snack and lunch and whenever. But more than just berries to eat at breakfast, we picked berries for baking, more berries to eat and even more berries to make jam. And oh did we make jam!
It was when they weighed all the succulent berries we picked and found out there were more than 20 pounds of raspberries that we decided we needed to make a lot of jam. First things first, we made Raspberries and Cream Muffins for breakfast the next day. (I shared that recipe for Muffin Monday) The day after that we made jam….lots of jam. This recipe makes only 2 cups of jam but can be doubled, tripled or multiplied even more with no changes in quality. We actually used 8 pounds of raspberries for our batch.
Preserving summer fruits by making jam brings a taste of summer days to those cold winter mornings when we really need a pick-me-up. As a reward for all our hard work and to test the quality of our jam we used some to fill a Victoria Sponge for our afternoon tea. Raspberry jam is my favorite in Victoria Sponge, and served with clotted cream for scones, and in thumbprint cookies, and in jelly roll cakes, and……and…..and……ooh the possibilities.
Raspberry Freezer Jam
1 pound fresh or frozen raspberries – about 2 cups
¾ cup sugar
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
NOTE: Place 2 or 3 large metal spoons in freezer before starting process.
- In a heavy bottom pan combine raspberries, juice and sugar.
- Bring to boil over medium-high heat then turn down heat to medium and mash fruit to break up berries.
- Continue boiling gently over medium heat for 20 to 25 minutes or till thickened enough for jam to sheet off spoon. To test jam: remove pan from heat, using one of the spoons you put in the freezer before starting the jam, dip spoon into jam mixture to coat spoon. Turning spoon on its side, allow jam to flow from spoon back into pan. It should instantly cool enough to fall off spoon in a sheet when the spoon is tipped. If jam does not sheet off spoon, return pan to heat and return boil for another 5 minutes, repeating sheeting test with another spoon from the freezer.
- Ladle jam into jars with tight fitting lids and cool to room temperature.
- Once cooled, transfer jars to freezer. Jam will keep frozen up to one year.
- Once opened, store jam in refrigerator up to 3 weeks.
Each batch makes 2 half pints.
I left this recipe’s directions in original quantities as my family always used it when picking raspberries at my grandfather’s farm. He only had a few bushes and we made small batches all season. This time for our mother-load of berries, we multiplied this recipe by eight to speed the process as we had so many raspberries to process. We ended up with 12 pints and 8 half pints of raspberry jam. I think that might just last till next raspberry season.