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Mixed Berry Jam
(recipe, Linda Ziedrich)
- 2 lb. frozen red currants, thawed
- 2 lb. frozen red raspberries, thawed
- 2 lb. frozen strawberries, thawed
- 7 cups sugar
- In a covered preserving pan — a wide, heavy, nonreactive pan (I use a big Le Creuset pot with sloping sides) — over medium heat, bring the currants and raspberries to a simmer. Uncover the pan, and simmer the fruits about 5 minutes, until they are quite tender (if you use fresh fruit instead of frozen, the simmering will take a bit longer).
- Purée the mixture through the fine screen of a food mill set over a large bowl. Briefly mash the strawberries with a potato masher (to break them into pieces, not to obliterate them), and add them to the fruit purée. Stir in the sugar.
- Pour half the mixture into the preserving pan. Boil the mixture over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes, until it mounds in a chilled bowl. Ladle the jam into pint or half-pint designated jam or Mason jars, and close the jars. Cook the rest of the fruit mixture in the same way, and fill more jars with the jam.
- The jars can then be processed in a boiling-water bath: five minutes if the jars are sterilized first, 10 minutes if they're not.
The red currants in this jam provide abundant acid and pectin for a strong gel. I undercooked my jam a bit to keep the gel on the soft side.
Unless your food-mill screen is finer than mine, some seeds will slip through, enough to add a little texture without making the jam unpleasantly seedy.
You can cut this recipe in half and cook all the jam at once.