Our Best Bites has a great tutorial on how to make strawberry freezer jam using the recipe in the Sure Jell box if you'd like to learn how to make it.
|Less sugar recipe in 1 1/8 cup reusable Glad containers|
For the first batch I made, I used the reduced sugar recipe from the Sure Jell box. I was curious what the difference was between it and the full sugar recipe.
The less sugar recipe is healthier, so that's a big plus. It calls for 4 cups of mashed strawberries and 3 cups of sugar, while the full sugar recipe calls for 2 cups of mashed strawberries and 4 cups of sugar--a huge difference!
|Four cups of strawberries -- enough to make one batch of less sugar jam. |
(I put off making the jam for a few days, so they are a bit riper than I would have liked them to be, oh well!)
The less sugar recipe makes 6 cups of jam while the full sugar recipe will make 5 cups. I noticed that it seems to take more of the less sugar jam to make a PB and J than the full sugar recipe, so it's good that it makes a larger batch.
What I really was curious about though is the difference in taste between the two jams, so I spread some of each on a slice of bread. The full sugar jam is denser than the less sugar jam, I'm pretty sure it's because of all of the sugar in it (and probably because I over-mashed the strawberries a bit on this batch--oops--you don't want to over-mash!).
Can you tell which is which?
The full sugar jam is on the left, the less sugar jam is on the right.
One of the things I noticed first was the difference in color. I think the less sugar jam has a more natural strawberry color...but on to the big question...how did they taste?
My four year old and I sampled each of them and it was unanimous--2 votes for the less sugar jam. I was actually surprised that I liked it better because I thought that it wouldn't be sweet enough for me--I was wrong. To me it has more of a natural strawberry taste and seems fresher than the full sugar recipe. This is just my opinion though, your taste buds might tell you something different! The fact that I liked the less sugar jam better doesn't mean that I won't totally love and enjoy eating the jam with all of the sugar in it that I made! I still think it tastes really good, just in a different way.
The Sure Jell recipe suggests that you store the jam in 1 or 2 cup plastic containers. I ended up trying a 1 cup round container, a 1 1/8 cup container, and an 8 ounce wide-mouthed Mason jar. The plastic containers stack well in the freezer and the glass mason jar will be perfect to put the jam in for gifts.
|I took them straight out of the fridge and freezer for the picture. I promise they aren't dirty--just frosty!|
The plastic containers cost less than the glass jars and I suppose would be safer to store in the freezer. This jam can be stored in the fridge for up to 2 weeks and in the freezer for up to one year.
|This package of 4 mason jars cost just under $4.|
So I guess the verdict is.....give the less sugar recipe a try.
If you don't like it, I'm so sorry and please don't be mad at me! :)
If you've tried both the less and full sugar recipes, do you have a preference?
***Next up I'll show you how I packaged the jam for gifts. I designed a whole page of printable tags, including one for a teacher thank you and one for a friend, and of course I'll be sharing them with you! Here's a little sneak peek...