It’s the season for raspberries again! I love foraging for black raspberries and making them into jam that we can enjoy the rest of the year.
I keep this jam very simple – just raspberries, a little sugar and some pectin. I find that this jam doesn’t need anything else to make it wonderful. Sometimes simple is the best.
A little note on the pectin. I like using pectin for raspberry jam because the raspberries don’t have much natural pectin in them. The pectin allows the jam to thicken quickly without a lot of cooking. I find this results in a brighter raspberry flavor. I use Pomona’s Pectin as it allows me to use less sugar that other brands of pectin. I also follow the recipe in the box of pectin, except I use a little less pectin. This gives a looser set to the jam, which I like. If you like a thicker jam, then increase your pectin and calcium waters to 2 teaspoons each. You can find Pomona’s at local stores like Whole Foods and Fresh Thyme or order on-line. Pomona’s website has links on which local stores carry their product.
Okay. Enough on that. Now for raspberries. I mentioned black raspberries already. I love them. But you’ll never find them in the store and probably not even at the farmers market. For those of you interested in more foraging information, The Backyard Forager is one of my favorite foraging sources. This is a link to one of her articles on black raspberries vs. blackberries.
If you don’t have a bramble bush in your backyard like I do, you can use any other raspberry for this recipe. Fresh red raspberries can be hard to find in the store because they are so delicate and don’t transport or stay fresh very long. Ideally, you want to use them within a couple days of picking. If you can’t find good fresh raspberries, feel free to use frozen raspberries. They will be as good, maybe better, than fresh. And remember – you can freeze your fresh raspberries for later, if you can’t get to them in time.
If you have extra raspberries that you don’t know what to do with, here are some ideas. Besides eating them fresh, I love adding them to kombucha. You can also add them into (or on top of) your overnight sourdough pancakes or waffles or oatmeal waffles. My other favorite way of using them is to put them into oatmeal – we especially love them in baked oatmeal. I’m working on posting that recipe soon – so check back for it! The jam also works heavenly in all of these recipes. I hope you enjoy!
- 4 cups raspberries fresh or frozen
- 1 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoon calcium water included in Pomona's Pectin package
- 1 1/2 teaspoon Pomona's Pectin
- To sterilize the jars, place rack in the large pot and cover jars in water. If you don’t have a rack, fold a dish towel and place on the bottom of the pot before you put the jars and water into the pot. Place lid on the pot and bring to boil, turn down the heat and simmer for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, turn off heat and leave the cover on the pot. This can be done while the jam is made. NOTE: A boiling water bath can be done in any stock pot that allows for water to cover the jars by at least 1-inch. A tall stock pot is fine to use, just place a towel or rack in the bottom so the jars don’t sit directly on the heat source. If your stock pot doesn’t fit all of your jelly jars, only jar up the ones that will fit in the pot, keeping the rest of the jam warm on the stove while the first batch of jars processes. Once the first jars are done processing, jar the remaining jam and process in a second batch. Alternately, you can just jar any extra jam to eat right away or freeze.
- If you are going to process the jars in a water bath, prepare the lids according to the directions on the box – usually just wash and place in warm water. I do this in the small saucepan on a back burner.
- Prepare calcium water according to package directions.
- Combine sugar and pectin in a small bowl and stir to combine. Set aside.
- Combine raspberries and calcium water in large saucepan, jam pot, or stock pot. Bring to roiling boil, stirring constantly
- Add sugar and pectin mixture to raspberries mixture. Bring back to boil, stirring constantly. Boil and stir for 1 minute or until sugar is completely dissolved. Remove from heat.
- Fill hot jam jars with 1/4 inch headspace.
- Clean rims and place lids on jars.
- Set jars into the simmering pot of water (on the rack). Jars should be covered by a minimum of one inch water. Process in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes. Start timer when water is at a boil.
- After the processing time is complete, turn off heat and remove cover. Let jars cool 5 minutes in the water bath. Remove jars from canner and place on a towel on the counter. Do not retighten bands, if loose. Cool 12-24 hours. Check seals. Label and store jars up to a year for best color and flavor. Any jars that don’t seal should be stored in the refrigerator and used first.
- If you don’t want to process this recipe in a water bath (or you have a jar that doesn’t seal), you can jar the jams and refrigerate for up to 3 weeks or freeze up to 6 months.