Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Strawberry Jammin'

In the words of my roommate, "Wanna jam?"

Let's talk condiments. Just real fast.

I don't get why people put cream cheese on bagels. I know that seems bizarre, but I have never liked cream cheese.

Also, I detest mustard. And mayonnaise. Oh my jeez. Don't even get me started on mayonnaise.

In France, I love the simplicity of their sandwiches a la boulangerie - a freshly baked baguette with butter (yes, butter!), ham, and cheese. It's divine. My kind of sandwich.

But I my point is this: is there any condiment as delicious as homemade jam? If you're thinking, Nutella...I like your style. But I consider Nutella more of a food group, rather than a condiment.

Growing up, one of my favorite things to bake on Sunday mornings with my Dad were buttermilk biscuits. We'd rock out to James Taylor and roll out our dough. The best part was topping each hot, flaky biscuit with fresh, homemade fruit jam. Peach jam. Blackberry jam. Apricot jam. I'm seriously like the freaking Bubba Gump of jam. 

So I'll ask one more time...

Wanna jam?

Strawberry Jam
This jam is super easy to make, with few ingredients (no pectin needed), and will stay fresh for a few weeks. It's strawberry take advantage of the fresh berries.

1 pound of strawberries, cut into quarters (can be fresh or frozen)
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons lemon juice

1) Combine strawberries and sugar in a large saucepan. Over medium-heat, heat the strawberries and sugar, stirring frequently. The sugar will start to melt, and the berries will soften over time.

Keep stirring. They'll get a bit syrupy. And the smell will start to intoxicate you.

2) Bring the berry mixture to a boil for about 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for about 15 minutes; the mixture thickens a bit. The berries will also start to lose their shape and break apart. Stir in the lemon juice and remove from heat. Taste a spoonful of the mixture to make sure it's sweet but not too sweet. You can add more lemon juice or more sugar, depending on your taste.

3) Spoon the mixture into jars. Don't put the lids on! Let the jam-to-be cool to room temperature and then, place the lids on the jars, and immediately refrigerate.

Enjoy on buttered toast, with a peanut or almond butter sandwich, or on top of vanilla bean ice cream. Or better yet, give this jam to a friend, hostess, or loved-one. Nothing is sweeter, truly, than a homemade gift.

Jam sesh, over. And that's all, folks.


  1. That looks delicious! I do love jam. Especially when slapped on a ham and cheese sandwich, deep fried, and topped with powdered sugar. I'm talking about a Monte Cristo sandwich! :)

    1. Woo hoo. You have me drooling. Sounds amazing and delicious!!!

  2. Why did I always think that making jam was so complicated? I'll definitely try this!!

    1. I know, right? Me too. This is not a traditional jam...but gets the job done. It's fresh and flavorful and easy. My favorite way to cook.

  3. Wow- that looks delicious!!! And that's the easiest jam recipe I think I've ever seen. I might have to make a smaller batch from the strawberries I have in the fridge...

    1. Do it! And enjoy it immediately. Just had some on my toast this morning. Delish! Happy jammin!

  4. Ohhh, strawberry jam is the best kind there is - especially when it's homemade!

    1. Agreed! It's very relaxing to make too. Lots of stirring and taking in the sweet strawberry smell!