Homemade Blueberry Jam

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After making strawberry jam, I was tempted to branch out and try other flavors.  And when blueberries came into season, blueberry jam was a delicious inevitability.

Refrigerator jams are delicious and easy to make and most importantly, don’t require pressure cookers or any of the other annoyances of traditional canning.  I modeled my recipe off Real Simple‘s, but with a few delicious changes.  I wanted to make more than just 3 cups, for starters.

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Homemade Blueberry Refrigerator Jam

10 cups blueberries (I used half fresh, half frozen wild berries)

3/4 cup sugar (I used half real, half splenda)

~1/4 cup lemon juice

~1/2 cup water

2 tbsp orange zest (optional, but delicious)

Add everything to a big enough saucepan.  Turn stove to medium heat.  Mash with a spoon, potato masher, whatever you have on hand so it gets kind of liquidy.  I only added the water because my mixture seemed too dry and I didn’t want my berries to scorch.  Cook over medium for ~30 mins, mashing the berries more as you go.  When it looks jammy enough, pour into sterilized jars, let cool, then fridge.

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I started with these fresh berries from California (yay local-ish berries) plus a bag of frozen wild blueberries from Oregon.

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Wash your berries well, and make sure any stems or icky berries are removed.

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I’m kind of obsessed with how pretty these berries are.

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I used lemon cubes I’d saved from my Grandpa’s recent lemon harvest, plus frozen orange zest from his oranges.

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That’s a lot of blueberries.  Cook them on medium, mashing occasionally to juice up the jam.

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They’ll get juicier…

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… and juicier.  At this point, about 30 mins in, I declared it done and funneled it into jam jars I’d cleaned, dried, and kept the oven at 350 to keep them disinfected.  I boiled the lids until they were ready to close.  Just trying to keep any germies out.

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My recipe made 3.5 jars of delicious jam.  My grandma tells me it’s delicious over vanilla ice cream as a blueberry sundae.  I poured some over whole wheat pancakes the other day.  Can’t beat blueberry jam!  Any other ideas I haven’t thought of?  Please share. IMG_1134

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