Summer is the time of abundance for seasonal fruits and berries. In this post I will give you my top tips for homemade summer jam ideas that you can prepare easily.
Homemade and cooking from scratch is the buzz word nowadays. Most of us are turning to cooking from scratch since we have become more health conscious and have taken responsibility for our health. With the click of the mouse we now have an infinite number of mouth watering recipes to choose and learn. I am not claiming jam to be healthy in this post, but more of a comfort food. But everything in moderation is the key anyway. Almost always, my husband is probably the only one who eats jam with his toast. Sometimes, I also enjoy the occasional jam on my toast.
I have been making jams for many years with recipes that were passed around from family and friends before I started to look into blogs. Jam making is that simple and you cannot go wrong if you follow some basic tips and tricks. The recipes and measurements are almost always the same. Because certain techniques go back to many decades or centuries and not that much has changed when it comes to basics.
Why I make my own jams?
During summer we have certain perennial fruits and berries which are fruiting in abundance. These fruits taste the best when they ripen on the plant itself. Since, we cannot eat all of our produce at the same time, I cook them into jams. I prefer making jams with the excess of fresh fruits instead of freezing them. Freezing requires electricity and therefore not economical. Nothing to beat the taste of freshly picked ripe fruits. We also have to consider the unforeseen event of power failures.
This way I also get to preserve the fruits for the winter months albeit in a jar. During Christmas homemade jams make a great addition to my Christmas baskets.
Another reason, why I make my own jams is to save costs. Organic store bought jams are a bit more expensive. Moreover, I know what goes into it, although, there is no need for any preservatives in the jam. Sugar is the best preservative in this case.
I also get to reuse and recycle the jam jars without wasting anything another plus for me.
Some Top Homemade Summer Jam Ideas
I have been sharing a few jam ideas in this site since I started blogging. Here are some of the ones which I make every year.
May – Rhubarb Ginger Jam
This is the first one I start with every year, because Rhubarb is our first garden harvest. We harvest Rhubarb between mid of may and early June. Rhubarb Ginger Jam is a hot favorite of my husband and our friends. Unfortunately, we don’t have so many Rhubarb plants in our garden. But its sufficient to make a few jars. I make a few preps with Rhubarb during the season.
June – Strawberry Jam
By mid may strawberries slowly start fruiting. By end of may and early June strawberry season is peaking. Even if you have a small patch like ours, you will get so much of it that you cannot eat them as quickly as they ripen. They stay fresh for only a couple of days. So, I usually save up for a couple of days and then make the jam.
For a full recipe visit Easy Fresh Strawberry Jam Recipe
Homemade Summer Jam with Rose Petals
I know this is an unusual jam for you to think of. I know this from India, I used to pass a shop which was a niche in selling everything eatable with roses. And they had a variety of Rose Jam, which was a too sweet for my taste. So I experimented with less sugar for the first time and it is a great success.
The taste and texture was just perfect. Click on the link and get a printable recipe card.
June – Redcurrant Jam
Redcurrants are ready to pick after June 24. This is when they ripen and these berries are so vibrant in color with a high content of organic acids and mixed polyphenols. The taste of the jam is also a little tart but you will love this jam. You can get the whole recipe by clicking on the link.
More Homemade Jam Ideas
Cherry is another jam you can try if you have a lot of it. Cherry season is peaking in June and we love that too. But we have only one tree and the yield is not yet so much for a jam. We barely have a handful for snacking as of now.
Actually, you can make jams with most fruits and berries. I covered only the ones which are growing in my garden.
My mother used to make jams with tomatoes too.
Top Tips for making Jams
- Use only fresh and good quality fruits and berries. Check for fungus or rotten ones and discard them because damaged fruits can spoil the whole batch.
- Use only clean and dry sterilized glass jars.
- While bottling use a wooden board underneath the glass jar before filling, this will prevent the glass from cracking while pouring the hot jam.
- Leave a little gap before closing the lid. The gap will create a vacuum when the jam is cooled. This helps in preserving the jam naturally.
- Keep all the tools in hand before you start the process.
- Place a small plate in the freezer for testing if the jam is done.
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