Home-prepared jams and jellies may conjure thoughts of steamy, day-long canning sessions, but who has time for all of that during the busiest days of Spring? This bright and herbal sweet spread can be prepared in around 30 minutes, for a lighter touch with less sugar, and less sweat, than traditional preserves.
Strawberry | Lemon | Rosemary
Quick Stovetop Jam
yield: 2 pints
Tis the season for plump, sweet jewel-toned berries to show themselves off at the market. I'll be playing around with my favorite fruit and herb combinations this season, beginning with one of my favorites. If this savory green flavor isn't your thing (gasp!), go sweet all the way with the addition of a small strip of vanilla bean. Take it a spicier direction with the addition of sliced jalapeno, or go mysterious and exotic with a splash of rosewater. Let your saucepan be your laboratory!
- 1 quart ripe strawberries, hulled and sliced
- 1 cup cane sugar
- Zest of one lemon
- Juice of ½ lemon
- 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
In a large mixing bowl, combine strawberries and sugar. Cover, and let macerate for 30 minutes to an hour.
Prepare 2 pint jars by washing in hot, soapy water, rinsing well, then placing in a 250° oven on a sheet pan to sterilize while jam cooks.
Transfer sugar and berries to a large saucepan. Add lemon zest, juice, and whole rosemary sprigs, and bring to a low to medium boil over medium high heat, stirring frequently. Use the back of a wooden spoon to mash strawberries slightly as they begin to break down in the boil.
Allow jam to continue its steady medium boil, watching closely, until spread begins to thicken.
Remove from heat, fish out rosemary sprigs and discard. Ladle into sterilized jars, wipe jar threads clean, and seal with lids. Keep refrigerated and consume within 2 weeks. If it lasts that long.