raspberry jam

One day last week, I had to work all day, so Jason picked raspberries without me. I love having fresh picked raspberries, but ohmygod, I hate picking them. They’re very delicate and take forever to pick. After about ten successful raspberries, I start to get bored and every time I pull one off the plant, it somehow gets lost on its way to the bucket. Don’t ask me how. It’s very strange. Although I always leave raspberry picking very full and satisfied (and in need of floss), I’m inevitably sad the next day when there are no raspberries in my refrigerator. It’s good that Jason did it by himself this year.

I decided to make some raspberry jam. I’ve just embarked on my canning adventures, and I’ve yet to attempt anything except fruit jams. Here’s how it went:

This is me mixing the mushed up raspberries and the sugar and pectin.

Taking a jar out of the boiling water canner. Ignore the weird faces that I’m making in all these photos.

Filling jars with jam.

I’m fishing jar lids out of simmering water with my handy magnetic wand thing.

Here, I’m wiping off the threads on the outside of the jars. It’s surprisingly hard not to grab the jar with your bare hand while you’re doing this. It was just sitting in simmering water. It just had boiling jam poured into it. It will burn you.

Tightening the bands on the lids.

This thing is cool because it makes it pretty easy to get the jars in the water without knocking them over.

See!

Putting the last jar in. Then you just close it and boil the jars for ten minutes. Canning is one of those things that seems really complicated and scary (um, botulism?!) but really, it’s not all that bad. As long as you don’t do anything stupid, and make sure that a jar is sealed before you eat anything out of it, you’re probably going to be just fine.

Here’s the finished product:

The one on the right is the (already opened) raspberry jam, and on the left is my first canning adventure, strawberry jalapeno jam. I’m really excited about this hobby, it’s like urban pioneering, I love the mix of nostalgic mason jars (but actually using them) and making my own food. Also, I love the raspberry jam because Jason picked the raspberries!

I just got a flat of these adorable jars, but I’m still deciding what to put in them. I’m thinking some kind of chutney (maybe peach while they’re in season) and giving them as gifts because they’re really just one serving. It should be something special.

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