No sugar or pectin! Only blueberries, honey & lemon juice. This is the best blueberry jam we’ve ever had…
Greetings! This is a fantastic, simple, recipe to make with kids. We used 8 cups of fresh blueberries with 2 cups of honey and it made 4 jelly jars (8oz) to can, plus a little extra. If you are planning to can your jam you will want to get your canning supplies ready while the blueberries marinate in the honey for awhile. I will include the canning instructions for those who want to try it.
**Caution: this jam boils for about 30 minutes. Use discretion when kids are helping!
You’ll need: 2 quarts (8 cups) of fresh blueberries, 2 cups (or so) of mild honey, 2 teaspoons of lemon juice. If you are canning your jam you will need 4 jelly jars.
Step 1: Sort blueberries into a colander and rinse. This is a great step for kids! Drain well and place into a large, heavy cooking pot. Measure 2 cups of mild honey into the pot and stir gently. Let this rest for at least 30 minutes, or up to a couple of hours.
Captain insisted that she was ready to remove the jars from the canner and did it for the 1st time with excitement!
Step 2: Fill your canning pot 3/4 full (or enough to cover the jars by 2″) and turn it on to get it hot. If you are delayed in cooking the jam, it won’t take long to get it boiling.
Step 3: Wash your jars, bands and lids. I put the jars into one pan of hot water, and the bands/lids into another small pan of hot water. While we cooked the jam, I turned the lids/bands on to simmer. Have a set of tongs and a small, clean cloth set aside to remove and wipe the jars after filling them. Put a small plate in the refrigerator to chill for the gel-test. I did these steps, but explained what I was doing, and why, to Captain. Canning will, I hope, be a natural progression for her as she grows up being around the process.
Step 4: Cook your jam! Put berries onto stove to heat over medium-high. Add the lemon juice and stir. The jam will need to cook down until it thickens. Ours boiled down for about 25 minutes. While it boils the berries will burst and you need to keep stirring! (*I allow my daughter to stand on her stool at the stove and stir while I am with her. It is important to be careful with the boiling fruit!) Do a “gel-test” by dropping some of the hot jam onto the cold plate. If it sets up, the jam is done.
Step 5: Can your jam! I filled the jars as Captain isn’t ready for that step yet. She watched and encouraged Remove one jar at a time, fill to about 1/4″ headspace, wipe the rim neatly with a cloth, cap and screw on your band. DO NOT tighten the band too much! Just snug is just right. Place your jars into the canner as you fill them. Return canner to boil and set timer for 10 minutes. Remove jars with jar-lifter and set onto a clean cloth. Each jar will make a popping sound as it seals. For each “ping!” we heard, everyone cheered!
Final step: Satisfaction and Toast!
I must say, the jam is delicious. It is great on pancakes too! Captain is hooked and wants to make more and can it into the tiny 4 oz jelly jars and give one to each of her friends. What a wonderful, homemade gift that she can be proud of!
Any parent who cans knows that there is something special that happens when our sons and daughters jump in and take and interest and help. Making something simple, like jam, is a great starter point! This jam is simple, healthy and scrumptious!
Thanks for reading on and a happy, homesteadin’ day to all!