May 2019 Mastery Challenge Round-up

It’s hard to believe, but May is over and that means that our fifth month of the Mastery Challenge is all done. This time, we focused on preserving berries. All stripes of berry preserves were fair game this time around and many of you took full advantage of the spectrum of options.

This time around, we had nearly 90 people report that they made more than 175 preserves. There were a whopping 68 batches of jam, 6 shrubs, 5 chutneys, 5 fruit butters, 4 compotes, 3 jellies, and 2 pie fillings.

There were also 24 preserves that fell under the other category and included things like dried fruits, fruit leather, whole fruit preserves, and sugared berries stashed in the freezer for later.

At the start of the month, most of you were already feeling pretty good about preserving berries.

But by the end of the month, feelings were even more positive. Those kinds of results always make me happy.

And here’s our visual breakdown of the various preserves made this time around, as well as a few images from the Instagram tag, #fijchallenge.

From Lesley, low sugar strawberry jam on the left and gooseberry jam on the right.

From Gena, cranberry raspberry jam from frozen fruit! An excellent use of last season’s bounty.

From Kristen, raspberry cherry lime jam. Looks pretty glorious to me!

Now, some comments from this month’s participants.

Loved it. It gave me the incentive to visit a local u-pick and the excuse to buy entirely too many strawberries. (If that’s even possible!)

Karen in Virginia

It was your Strawberry Vanilla Jam that first brought me to your blog, which led me to buying “Preserving by the Pint”, which later led me to the Facebook Community Group Challenge. Loving every minute! I’m more of an occasional canner than a lot of people in the group but I love seeing what everyone’s doing.

Sue in North Carolina

Berries are my jam! I still have one more May project to make: Blueberry Lemon Curd. Thanks for the challenge!

Kathleen in Arlington

I also want to acknowledge the comments that many of you made voicing your frustration with the lack of available fresh berries for this month. It’s hard to pick a perfect topic for everyone every time. I’m sorry if this month didn’t work perfectly for you. Hopefully next month’s Jam challenge will work better.

To see more of what your fellow Mastery Challenge participants made this month, make sure to check out the #fijchallenge feed on Instagram and join the Food in Jars Community group on Facebook!

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