Making your own strawberry jam is fun and cost effective.  If your family loves jam and if you like to make sure that what goes in that bottle are pure fresh strawberries, natural, brown sugar, natural pectin from lemon juice, and no artificial or chemical ingredients, then it's about time you make your own.  The price of an 18 ounces of strawberry jam  at the supermarket has gone up. You'll be surprised to find out that if you buy your strawberries from the farmers market, two small square plastic baskets ($2.50/basket)can yield about 3 cups of strawberry jam. 

You can buy the special cooking kit to make jams and other preserves.  There are so many you can find online and Target carries one kit which you can check out.  I don't really have a special cooking kit for making my jams and some preserves.  I just saved a lot of bottles from glass containers of sauces and other food products I used in the past.  For sterilizing my bottles, I use my big old pot where I boil my lobsters and crabs.  They're made of stainless steel and they're easy to clean. 

6 cups mashed strawberries (I used my potato masher)
3 cups of brown sugar (you can add more if you want it sweeter)
1 lemon (juice)

Put the strawberries and sugar in a pan and bring to a boil and cook for 10 minutes. Mix well.  Remove the scum (foam) that forms on top of the strawberries with a big spoon.  Add the lemon juice and cook for another 5 minutes.  Let cool.

At the same time, sterilize your jars and caps by boiling in a big pot of water covering the bottles for about 10 minutes.  Remove bottles and caps and put on a clean tray to cool.

Scoop the cooked strawberry jam into the jars until about 1/2" from the bream.  Cover with the caps and boil again in the water for another 10 minutes.  Let cool.

*You can also use other fruits like raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, peaches, pears, etc.
*Tested and Tried at Chris' kitchen on 03/28/2011 

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Homemade jam makes me think of spring around the corner and nice fresh strawberries. Nice simple recipe, and I will have to look for those kits, can't say that I have seen them.
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