It’s common knowledge that strawberries and rhubarb go well together. Just about everyone I know has a fond memory of a pie or cobbler made with a smattering of sugar and those two ingredients. It should come as no surprise to you that these natural partners make an exceptionally good jam. Truly, it’s exceptional in it’s tart, freshness.
I’ve made this recipe a couple of times recently, though as I looked for photos to use in this post, I realized that I didn’t manage to capture the process. This happens sometimes. When I’m awash in fruit and canning more for myself than for the blog (I know it might shock you, but this does happen), I will head into the kitchen and let myself slip into the meditation that cooking something familiar can offer. The camera doesn’t get much play when that happens.
Outside of the stack of sealed jars now cooling their heels in my coat closet, the only evidence that I even made this jam is the corner of that yellow bowl off on the right edge of this picture. It’s full of macerated berries and chopped rhubarb. The new copper preserving pan I got obviously stole the show that day. (I’ve made a few batches in the copper pan so far and I’m really enjoying it. I plan on writing up my thoughts in a more organized fashion sometime soon, so keep your eyes peeled for that.)
Before we get to the recipe, there’s just one more order of business to take care of. That’s right, it’s giveaway time! This week, I have a gorgeous pair of Santoku knives from Cutco to offer up to one lucky winner. This is the second year I’ve had the opportunity to work with Cutco and I’m delighted to do it. I like their knives because they are sharp (and stay sharp), have heft without being too heavy and are fairly indestructible.
I don’t adore the look of the handle (though it’s far more appealing in the pearl finish), but it’s shockingly comfortable in the hand and doesn’t mind spending a couple of hours soaking in the sink (not so for my wooden handled knives. And yes, I know that that’s not how you’re supposed to treat knives, but life doesn’t always allow me to wash dishes immediately after they’re made).
If you’re interested in a chance to win this pair of knives, leave a comment here tell me about your favorite kitchen knife (my parents still prefer the ancient L. L. Bean fileting knife that my dad inherited from his father in 1971 above all others). One entry per person, please. Winner will be chosen at random. Comments will close on Sunday, June 19, 2011 at 11:59 p.m. and I will post the winner promptly the next day.
Disclosure: Cutco gave me a pair of these knives for free and is offering the set for giveaway at no cost to me. Happily, my opinions are still all my own (I’m not nearly that cheap).
Now, on to that recipe!
- 2 cup of chopped rhubarb (approximately 1 1/2 pounds of stalks)
- 4 cups of chopped strawberries (approximately one quart)
- 3 cups sugar
- 1 lemon, zested and juiced
- 1 packet liquid pectin
- Wash your jars and rings and lay them out on a towel to dry. Place your lids in a small saucepan and put over medium heat, so that the sealing compound softens in preparation for canning.
- In a 8-quart, non-reactive pot, stir the rhubarb, strawberries and sugar together off the heat. Once the sugar has begun to dissolve, place pot on burner and bring to a boil.
- Add the lemon juice/zest to the pot and let it bubble gently for approximately 15-20 minutes. As the jam cooks, use the back of a wooden spoon to mash any large pieces of fruit. Add the pectin, stir to combine and let cook for a few more minutes.
- At this point, dip a spoon in the jam and see how it coats the back of the spoon. You can also try the saucer test. If you get a nice, even sheet, the jam is done. You can also taste at this point, to see if you like the balance of flavors. Add a little more lemon juice if you feel it needs additional brightening.
- Pour into hot jars, wipe rims to remove any spillage and apply lids/rings.
- Process in a hot water bath for ten minutes.
- Remove from water and let cool. When jars are cool, remove rings and test seals. Refrigerate any jars that didn’t seal and store the rest in a cool, dark place.