Growing up on a farm we made a lot of jellies, jams and preserves with our fruit. We had apple, blackberry, grape, strawberry, cherry and whatever other kind of fruit my mom happened to stumble upon. She didn’t believe in making small batches either; her motto was “go big or go home.” We (seriously!) canned at least 200 jars a year. To this day I remember the luscious smell of cooking jam, filling the house with fruity aroma. I still enjoy canning my own jam and jelly as long as I a) do it in small batches, and b) don’t have to spend all day in preparation time. This year, Ball Canning sent me their FreshTECH Automatic Jam & Jelly Maker and their new for 2015Ball Blue Book Guide to Preserving. I had a patch of ripe blackberries waiting to be picked in my back yard and was ready to get started. This Black and Blueberry Jam recipe is the result of my labors.
Not only does this jam taste sooooooo good, it takes only four ingredients and 30 minutes to make! I had two cups of fresh blackberries and a pint of blueberries I had purchased for 99 cents. Along with some sugar and some lemon juice, I had all my ingredients and was ready to can.
I have to admit, I am in love with the FreshTECH Automatic Jam & Jelly Maker. (Why couldn’t this have been around when I was growing up???) It produces small batches of jam or jelly and does all of the stirring itself! It even prompted me on when to add the sugar. We did have a minor glitch; the screw that assembles the lid was wedged in tightly into the lid and was hard to remove, but otherwise than that, we were making jam in minutes.
To make the jelly, lightly mash the blackberries. Add the blackberries, blueberries and lemon juice to the Ball FreshTech. Set on jelly setting and add five minutes. When prompted, by the beep, add sugar. That’s it! When it is finished mixing, allow to sit 10 minutes to thicken. I decided to ladle my jelly into jars and not finish the canning process, but just store it in the fridge.
If you don’t have a FreshTECH Jam & Jelly maker, you can still make the jelly. Just put the mashed blackberries, blueberries and lemon juice into a large saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil and then reduce heat to medium. Add sugar and stir until blended. Boil until it reaches the thickness you like, stirring often. (Approximately 30 to 35 minutes.) Ladle into jars. My recipe made 3 (8 ounce) jars and one (4 ounce) jar.
- 2 cups blackberries, washed and lightly mashed
- 2 cups blueberries, stems removed and washed
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- 2½ cups sugar
- Mix blackberries, blueberries and lemon juice together in large saucepan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium. Add sugar and stir until dissolved. Cook until desired thickness is reached, stirring often. (Will probably take 30 to 35 minutes.) Ladle into jars and store in the fridge or finish canning process.
Do you have a favorite jam or jelly recipe?