Tuesday, May 22, 2012

It's jelly time!

Well, as you saw before.. spring is here. Last time we were here Ivy and I were planting flowers. This time we are picking strawberries to make jam!

We invited Darla over for this little adventure in the garden.
This was going to be a project. First I explained to the girls that the jars need to be *very* clean. So we laid them in the sink with a mixture of hot water and bleach with a pinch of dish soap then headed out to the greenhouse where the berries await us!

Washing the jars!
 It was really hard not to eat all of the berries out there. ( We all snuck a few little bites! ) I think the girls ate more than they picked. We each filled up out little buckets with the berries.

Getting there.

After out buckets were fairly full we went back into the kitchen. Our hands were all pink from the berries. We washed out hands as well as the berries. I had the girls dump the berries into the bottom of the sink. I then turned on the water and to their surprise they floated up to the top! I explained to the girls why the berries float and don't sink like other things. ( Just like a rubber ducky in the tub! ) 
Floatin' berries!

After we washed our hands and the berries. We need to hull them. I explained to them how to hull a berry but that it was a little too dangerous for them to do. ( no knives for lil hands.! ) So, while I hulled the berries the girls got the sugar and the pectin off the shelf and bravely carried them across the kitchen to the table. 

Here comes the fun part. MASHING! I sliced the berries up fairly quickly and tossed them into a large pot. I told the girls that it was time to make a mess. They rolled up their sleeves and mashed the berries with their fingers. Making a big ol' mess. Lots of giggling making this sweet mess! 

After the mashing was done we set the mixture of pectin and berries on the stove to boil. Adding a bit of sugar later on. This needs to boil for 5-10 minutes or so. So, in the meantime we went and made our very own labels for our jam.

Cooking the jam!

Label Making! (oops, I cut my head off! .. the girls are the important part <3)

After the labels were done we needed to check on the jelly. It seemed to be done. We let it cool down and settle with more sugar and a bit more pectin for solidity. After it was ready and set I poured them into the jars. Ivy was a good supervisor! 
Filling the jars.

Finally -- the end result! Our very own organic strawberry jam! We brought a basket of jam and fresh eggs to a few close friends. We'll be making more flavors soon! 
2012 Strawberry Jam! 

Thanks for making jelly with us!

Love, Meg

1 comment:

  1. I cant wait to do this again with all the yummy fruits we have growing in the garden!