Last week I could barely move my right arm because of a shoulder injury. I had these anemic California strawberries and limp rhubarb that just had to be used or I was going to have to compost them. That is when I remembered that you can make jam in the breadmaker! I figured all I had to do was throw everything into the loaf pan and turn it on and be done with it.
Nope! Turns out all jam recipes require a little elbow grease. Using my left arm I mashed half the strawberries with 1/3 cup of the sugar. Painful but doable. I had less rhubarb than I was supposed to and evened it out by adding more strawberries than the recipe called for.
This is why you need to mash them, the berries release all of this natural pectin.
I added the chopped rhubarb, the rest of the strawberries, brown sugar (fascinating!), a small box of pectin and the rest of the granulated sugar. I stirred it up and put it in the breadmaker loaf pan. Then I selected the “preserves” setting and hit the start button.
Around an hour and a half later, I had a fabulous dark, rich and stunning strawberry rhubarb jam. I was going to jar it and sterilized a jar but…
I did not have enough! In order to really preserve a jar of jam it has to come to the stop and my pickle jars were just too darn big!!!
I am officially getting closer to truly preserving food but am not quite there yet. I will divide the jam up into containers and freeze them so I will have this rich but summery jam during the dark heart of winter.
Rhubarb must be cooked and cooked well so the breadmaker was the perfect way to make this jam. The strawberries themselves did not have a ton of flavour but by cooking everything together slow and steady in the breadmaker, all their flavours were slowly melded. Rich, dark and luscious, I am absolutely thrilled that once again my breadmaker makes my life so much easier and so delicious.