Forget the idea that making jam is a complicated, all-day process. This recipe from our class The From-Scratch Kitchen is three-steps easy. Plus, it’s a prime candidate for gifting. Strawberry Pinot Jam — who wouldn’t love that?!
Yield: 1½ to 2 cups
1 pound prepared fresh or frozen fruit
2-4 tablespoons water
¼ cup – ½ cup sugar
½ teaspoon fresh lemon juice, or more to taste
Herbs, spices and other flavor additions (see ideas below)
1. Simmer the Fruit
In a heavy-bottomed pot, combine the fruit and water over medium heat. Bring to a low boil, cover and reduce the heat to medium-low.
Cook, stirring and mashing every few minutes, until the fruit breaks up and starts to liquefy, about 10-15 minutes.
2. Sweeten and Thicken
Stir in the sugar. Raise the heat to medium and continue to cook, uncovered, until the sauce thickens. This could take anywhere from 5-20 minutes, depending on the type of fruit you use and how juicy it is. Stir often to prevent burning.
3. Season It Up
Remove from heat and stir in the lemon juice. Taste and adjust the sweetness if necessary. Allow the jam to cool and transfer to a jar.
Mix up the flavor profile of your jams by making any of these adjustments to your base.
Add a cinnamon stick with the sugar
Add 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest with the lemon juice
Add 1 teaspoon finely chopped mint after the sugar
Add the seeds of a vanilla bean with the sugar
Add 1 teaspoon rose water instead of lemon juice
Add a splash of kirsch or Grand Marnier with the lemon juice
Add vanilla bean seeds with the sugar
Add ½ teaspoon almond extract with lemon juice
Peel and grate a 2″ piece of fresh ginger; add it to the fruit as it cooks
Add a star anise, cinnamon stick and grated nutmeg to the fruit as it cooks
Add a splash of bourbon with the fruit
Add a cinnamon stick to the fruit as it cooks
Sweeten the fruit with honey instead of sugar
Strawberry Pinot Noir
Add vanilla bean seeds to the jam as it cooks
Add three tablespoons of pinot noir after the sugar
Peel a 2″ piece of fresh ginger and mince; add to the fruit as it cooks.