Every summer I spend a few days making jams and canning fruits. It is incredibly satisfying to pop open a few lids in the middle of winter. Now that I am moving (yey!) and starting a new job (yey!), there is extra pressure to get things done right now. So between laundry, stuffing boxes, trying to decide what books I need right now, and signing paperwork, I am taking a little time to make some jam.
Last summer was very difficult for the rhubarb plants at my parents’ house. It was very wet and the tree nearly grew a lot, creating a huge shady patch.
Fortunately, this year my mother rescued the rhubarb. While only 3 of the 4 plants survived, there has been enough for me to make some jam.
When I was young and we had first moved into this house,I remember my mom putting up jar after jar of rhubarb jam. Sometimes it was strawberry rhubarb, but more likely just rhubarb. I hated it. It was a strange color, a brown-green-pink thing. And it wasn’t as good like plain ol’ strawberry jam. It was my father’s domain.
But, much like many other foods my father now has to share with me (mustard, pickled ginger, mostarda), I have grown to love rhubarb. However, I can’t justify paying for it in a grocery store. I’ll just have to hope that soon I’ll have my own garden. Or that my parents share theirs. Here’s hoping!
Rhubarb Berry Jam
Adapted from David Lebovitz
3/4 lb rhubarb, 1/2″ pieces (300 g)
2 c frozen mixed berries (250 g)
1/2 c water
1 1/2 c sugar
2 tbsp low sugar pectin
2 tbsp lemon juice
Combine all ingredients in a large low pot. Bring to a low boil. Cook for 15 minutes.
Place a spoonful of jam in a plate and put in the freezer. Check after about 30 seconds to see that the jam has jelled.
When it reached the correct thickness, you can begin filling jars. For more about canning, see the USDA Complete Guide to Home Canning