Monday, July 25, 2011

Cherry Jam

Childhood memories are filled with all kinds of scents and flavors , some from holidays of our youth while others remind us of the coming of summer. We can all think of a scent or food that simply takes us back in time. For my husband this jam is all of those things. You see my husband could not be more thrilled with my canning efforts and the fact that Cherries are his favorite doesn't hurt. Many people want to know why Jam's? Well it's simple ( A Simpler Life ) , jams are sweet much like candy and living in Florida Canning makes the most sense since we face hurricanes every year , not to mention the thunderstorms which can take out our power or produce tornadoes. So as easy as it is to freeze it really makes no sense considering where I live. The other reason , it is healthier then most store bought. I can use as much or as little sugar as I want in most recipes. And last but not least I save money. I can have the fruits I love year round without having to spend a fortune on them. I buy them when in season , can them and eat all year round on our Homemade Ice Cream , toast , Sandwiches and so much more. Most canned jams and jellies will last a year or more. The more is when you start to loose some of the nutritional value , they are still good to eat but loose some of their dietary value as time goes on. Many people use cherry pitters which I am sure makes it a little easier , but I prefer the old fashioned way of simply sitting and halving them to get the pits out. It's a good time to bond with family. So now you know my reasoning for canning so much. Below is the recipe I am currently using which came from but I have seen others where spices such as cinnamon are added. And I am thinking of trying that myself since we love cinnamon. If you have a recipe you would like to share please let me know I am always looking for new recipes to try my only requirement is that it is as all natural as possible. I really enjoy the old recipes from our grand parents or older. They really knew how to cook :)

** I did alter the recipe a bit before posting since after making it I found that simmering the cherries for a few minutes helped. I used halved cherries not chopped and the sugar did not dissolve as quickly as they said so I added another minute to the boil time. Also I did not get any foam so skimming was not an issue. It tastes great and I am planning on using a jar of it for cherry cobbler. That is how versatile canned jams are.**


4 c. pitted, chopped sweet or sour cherries
1 pkg. powdered pectin
1/4 c. lemon juice (use only with sweet cherries)
5 c. sugar

Combine cherries, pectin and lemon juice (if needed) in a large sauce pot. Bring to Boil and Simmer over med. high heat for about 3-5 mins. Add sugar. Bring to a full rolling boil; boil for 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly. If Foam develops Skim foam. Pour, hot into hot jars, leaving 1/4 inch head space. Adjust caps. Process 10 minutes in boiling water bath. Makes about 6 or 7 half pints.

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