Nothing says summer like fresh strawberries! When my mom suggested we make jam together while I was visiting her a few weeks ago, it was no surprise we both wanted to make a sweet strawberry jam. When she mentioned she had basil growing in her garden, we decided to try a strawberry and basil combination that turned out to be amazing. The addition of lime zest made this the perfect summer jam- sweet, fresh and with a surprising earthy note from the basil. I'm eating this jam on everything. It's great on bread with crumbles of feta on top, or even stirred into Greek yogurt. I even spooned some over warm sponge cake and topped it with ice cream for a new spin on the classic strawberry shortcake! Use your imagination. This is a really versatile jam.
This was my first time making jam or doing canning of any kind. Since I am obviously not an experienced canner, I am not going to go into details of the water bath method that we used to make this jam. If you already can, you know the specifics. If not, you can check out the Ball website or something similar and get the run down from the experts. I was happy to have my mom walk me through the process. It wasn't as complicated as I imagined!
Makes 9 Half Pint Jars of Jam
- 3 Quarts of Strawberries (about 12 cups) washed, sliced and with the stems removed
- 6 cups of sugar
- Juice and zest from 2 limes
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
** Use the water bath canning method for jar sterilization and preserving the jam**
- Add strawberries, sugar, lime juice and zest into a large pot.
- Bring to a boil, stirring until the sugar is dissolved.
- Cook, stirring often, until the mixture reaches 220 degrees F.
- Add the basil to the mixture and let cook for an additional 5 minutes.
- Once the jam has reached the desired consistency, remove from heat and skim off foam.
- Fill jars, leaving 1/4 inch of headroom.
- Clean rims and close the lids on the jars.
- Place in boiling water bath for 10 minutes to seal.
- Remove from water and allow to cool for 12 hours without moving.
- Tighten lids and store for up to a year.