Strawberry jam

Strawberry jam

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(16 ratings)

Prep: 20 mins Cook: 40 mins Plus overnight macerating

Easy

Makes 3-4 jars

James Martin's step-by-step guide to making homemade preserve - the resulting jars are ideal for gift hampers

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable

Nutrition: per tbsp

  • kcal35
  • fat0g
  • saturates0g
  • carbs9g
  • sugars9g
  • fibre0g
  • protein0g
  • salt0g
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Ingredients

  • 1kg hulled strawberry
    Strawberries

    Strawberry

    straw-bare-ee

    Once available in Britain for just a brief period during the summer, strawberries are now a year…

  • 750g jam sugar
    Sugar

    Sugar

    shuh-ga

    Honey and syrups made from concentrated fruit juice were the earliest known sweeteners. Today,…

  • juice 1 lemon
    Lemon

    Lemon

    le-mon

    Oval in shape, with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile fruits…

  • small knob of butter (optional)
    Butter

    Butter

    butt-err

    Butter is a dairy product made from separating whole milk or cream into fat and…

Method

  1. Prepare the strawberries by wiping them with a piece of damp kitchen paper. (Wiping the strawberries rather than washing them ensures the fruit doesn’t absorb lots of water – too much water and the jam won’t set easily.) To hull the fruit, use a knife to cut a cone shape into the strawberry and remove the stem. Cut any large berries in half.

  2. Put the strawberries in a bowl and gently toss through the sugar. Leave uncovered at room temperature for 12 hrs or overnight. This process helps the sugar to dissolve, ensures the fruit doesn’t disintegrate too much and helps to keep its vibrant colour.

  3. Before starting the jam, put 2 saucers in the freezer. Tip the strawberry mixture into a preserving pan with the lemon juice. Set over a low heat and cook very gently. If any sugar remains on the sides of the pan, dip a pastry brush in hot water and brush the sugar away.

  4. When you can no longer feel any grains of sugar remaining, turn up the heat to start bubbling the jam and bringing it to the boil. (The sugar must be completely dissolved before increasing the heat, otherwise it will be difficult for the jam to set, and it may contain crystallised lumps of sugar.)

  5. Boil hard for 5-10 mins until the jam has reached 105C on a preserving or digital thermometer, then turn off the heat. If you don’t have a thermometer, spoon a little jam onto one of the cold saucers. Leave for 30 secs, then push with your finger; if the jam wrinkles and doesn’t flood to fill the gap, it is ready. If not, turn the heat back on and boil for 2 mins more, then turn off the heat and do the wrinkle test again. Repeat until ready.

  6. Use a spoon to skim any scum that has risen to the surface and discard this. Do this only once at the end, rather than constantly during the boiling stage, to reduce wastage.

  7. Add a knob of butter, if you like, to the finished jam, and stir in to melt. This will help to dissolve any remaining scum that you haven’t managed to spoon off the top. Leave the jam to settle for 15 mins – this will ensure that the fruit stays suspended in the mixture and doesn’t all float to the top of the jam jar. Meanwhile, sterilise your jars.

  8. Ladle into warm jars, filling to just below the rim. Place a wax disc on top of the jam (this prevents mildew forming), then cover with a lid or a cellophane circle and elastic band. Pop on a label (include the date), plus a pretty fabric top, if you like. The jam can be stored for up to 1 year in a cool, dry place. Refrigerate after opening.

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Comments, questions and tips

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annaguernsey
14th Jul, 2015
I've never made jam before but this recipe was fool proof! I used both a thermometer and a plate in the freezer to check when it was done. I am shocked by how well I managed to pull this off! And it wasn't a fluke, I've made it twice since.
hannahspruijt
8th Jul, 2015
5.05
Amazing, this jam is beautiful! I've tried other recipes on here and had toffee/burnt disasters, but this worked really well. I just used the cold plate test - seems to have worked! Also, I think the key is stirring - this time I didn't stop stirring and had no issues. Not sure why other recipes say you shouldn't? Thanks James Martin - winning recipe for me :)
AlexisN's picture
AlexisN
5th Oct, 2014
Can you kindly let me know the shelf life unopened? and also once opened how long will it last? Many thanks
june sabin's picture
june sabin
27th Jul, 2019
It says up to a year in the recipe
irene_p_n
30th Jun, 2014
5.05
This was my first ever attempt at making jam and I'm hooked :) Turned out perfect. Took a while for the temperature to come up but that might be my stove.

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