Let’s Talk Jam: Preface

The kids and I went out to a great little place called Sweet Berry Farm. It’s a pick-your-own kind of place and right now strawberries are ripe. We had a great time and picked nearly five pounds!  After we got home and we ate our fill, I thought it might be fun to make and can some strawberry jam.  I have the berries already, so how hard can this be?  I picked up some pectin, a canning accessories kit (you know, a jar picker-uppper thingie, a something-or-other stick, some other do-dads that I’m not sure about), and a dozen 4 ounce glass jars with lids and rings.

Since I’ve never canned anything or tried to preserve any kind of food, I did a little search online, and wouldn’t you know it, there is a National Center for Home Food Preservation!  I was very excited about this website and I suspected it would supply me with everything I needed to know about canning. It didn’t let me down. The website first said that if I was new to canning, I needed to read the USDA’s Principles of Home Canning.

So I read it.


Holy Moses, that document has me convinced that I will grow Clostridium botulinum and everyone who eats my jam will get botulism and die a horrible death.

I’m also thinking that making and canning jam at 10 PM might be overly ambitious, so maybe I’ll try it this weekend.

In the meantime, I have some cute berry farm photos. (There are also goats on this farm, but sadly they’re not part of the pick-you-own scheme.)


One thought on “Let’s Talk Jam: Preface

  1. Strawberry jam is my favorite! We like to make enough to use all year, and give away at Christmas. If you’re really worried about canning, you can always make freezer jam. But for some reason, I remember reading that it’s not as big of a deal for things like jam and tomatoes (which is all I can). I think it has something to do with the sugar in jam and the acid in tomatoes. I’m not sure … we’re so far away from canning season in MN that all the information is far from my mind right now.

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