Time Well Spent this Summer with Ball®

“This post is sponsored by  Newell Brands, makers of Ball® Fresh Preserving Products; however, all thoughts and opinions are my own.”

Summer… the sweetness of warm weather, fun in the sun AND plenty of perfectly ripe fruits and veggies! It’s definitely one of the first things that comes to mind when I think of my favorite season. Growing up, my grandparents would take me to the local farms and we’d pick fresh strawberries, apples and blueberries and it’s a tradition I still hold near and dear to my heart.

As soon as we moved back into our home a few weeks ago, I couldn’t wait to get back in the kitchen and start cooking again. I was excited to try something new and canning had been on my radar to try, so it was only fitting that the very first thing I made is this Mixed Berry Jam.

I’m becoming increasingly appreciative of sustainable, fresh and hand-crafted items… AND the fact that I can make these cute 8oz.  pretties as gifts for family + friends makes this hobby something I know my girls can get in with, too.

Mixed Berry Jam Recipe

Looking for a fun way to host a girls’ night or a mommy-and-me cooking class this summer?? Grab a group of your nearest and dearest and start a new tradition with these thoughtful handmade delights that no one will be able to say no to! However you chose to start your canning journey, it’s sure to be time well spent!

Here’s the step-by-step process of how to make it happen:

INGREDIENTS

  • 4 C. crushed fresh berries
  • 4 1/2 tbsp Ball® RealFruit™ Classic Pectin
  • 3 C. of sugar

TOOLS

  • 6 Ball® 8 oz (Half-Pint) Jars
  • 1 Ball® Canner with Canning Rack, or large stockpot
  • Ball® Utensil Kit (includes funnel, headspace tool, and jar lifter)
  • 8 qt. saucepan
  • 1 Wooden Spoon (for stirring)

Directions

First Things First: Heat Jars in Hot Water Until Ready for Use!

Fill a large saucepan, stockpot, or canner halfway with water. Be sure your canning rack is resting on the rim of the pot or on the bottom of the canner. Turn up the heat to warm your jars.

It’s Berry Crushing Time…

Place one layer of berries in your favorite dish or bowl. Crush berries with a potato masher or fork. Remove crushed berries and place in a measuring cup or bowl. Repeat until you have 4 cups of crushed berries.

Now the Good Stuff:

Combine berries and pectin in an 8 quart saucepan. Bring the mixture to a full rolling boil. Boil hard for 1 minute, stirring constantly.

Add 3 cups of sugar, stirring to dissolve. Return the mixture to a full rolling boil. Boil hard for 1 minute, and keep stirring constantly.

Using the Ball® Jar lifter, remove one hot jar at a time, emptying the water inside the jar as you lift. Place hot jar on a wooden cutting board or dish towel [thank goodness for those tongs—lifesaver!!]

Fill the mixed berry jam into a hot jar, using a funnel. Be careful not to overfill the jars and use a towel to hold the hot jar steady [be sure not to overfill]

Fill until you’re left with 1/4 inch headspace. Remove extra air from the jars with the small, flat end of the headspace tool or a silicone spatula.

Wipe the jar rim with a clean, damp cloth, which helps create the perfect seal.

Center the lid, apply the band, and twist with a gentle force from your fingertips, in opposed to using your whole arm. Place that jar back into the hot water.

Repeat until all jars are filled, with lids on properly, and back in your canner or pot. If you don’t have enough jam to fill a jar, DO NOT process that jar. Just let it cool, put it in the fridge, and consume within 2 weeks.

Turn Up the Heat:

Lower the canning rack with jars into the water, until the jars are covered by 1-2 inches of water. Place the lid on your pot and adjust heat to bring the water to a full rolling boil. Process the jars for 10 minutes, adjusting for altitude. Turn off heat, remove the lid off the canner or pot, and let jars stand for 5 minutes in the hot water. Remove jars with Jar Lifter and cool.

Last Checks:

Leave jars undisturbed for 12-24 hours. DO NOT retighten bands, this may interfere with the sealing. Do the flex test and then wipe the outside of the jars and lids. Label with date canned and store in a cool, dry, dark place for up to 1 year!

So, the hard part… what to serve them with?!?!

Crack open your pantry and make your favorite homemade biscuits OR serve up some silver dollar pancakes with the Mixed Berry Jam as a topping! You could also serve as an appetizer when you have friends come over… top over cream cheese and accompany the jam with crackers. SO many options for summer!

Grab all of your Ball® shopping list items HERE.

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