Earl's Blueberry Julep Jam
This non-alcoholic version of the cocktail of the same name is one of my favorite summer recipes. It's fun, simple, the ingredients are easy to find and any leftovers you end up with can be thrown into the blender for a nice, refreshing summer smoothie!
Yield: 5 pint jars
- 10 cups blueberries
- 2 cups fresh mint
- 4 lemons
- 1 cup pectin
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 large, metal pot
- Gather your blueberries and mint and chop them up using a food processor or blender. For best results, place the mint on the bottom (near the blades) and weigh it down with the blueberries. Process until the mixture is in a liquid or near liquid state. Depending on the size of your blender, you'll likely have to fill it and empty it several times, so get that large metal pot handy!
- Stir the pot occasionally (even though it's not heated-- yet!) as the blueberries will congeal and layer on their own otherwise. Once all the blueberries and mint are processed and in the pot, turn the burner to low heat. Keep stirring!
- Roll the lemons on a hard surface to maximize the amount of juice you can get out of them. Slice in half, squeeze as much of the juice into the pot as you can, then set aside or throw away the seeds.
- Continue to stir throughout the whole process. Add pectin and sugar. After a few minutes, turn heat up to medium and stir until all ingredients are thoroughly mixed together. Taste (carefully) and add additional sugar to taste, if you like a sweeter jam. Be careful not to add too much! Depending on the ripeness of your blueberries, your jam may already be deliciously sweet.
- Bring ingredients to a low boil and let them boil for about ten minutes (stir regularly enough and adjust heat so you get a few bubbles but the boil doesn't become foamy and roiling.)
- Turn off the heat and continue to stir. Once mixture starts to thicken and cool a little (about 5 minutes) Ladle it into sterilized jars to within 1 to 1/2 inch of the rim. Wipe rims clean, then seal in your preferred canning method (I tend to stick the tightly-lidded jars in the oven at 225 for about 30 minutes to seal them.)
- Allow jars to cool somewhere safe and out of reach of pets and children. Once jars are cool, check the seals to make sure they're down and not popped. If any of the jars have popped lids, keep them in the fridge and eat them as soon as you can (aka: before they go bad. Shouldn't be a problem because they're so darn good, especially when it's hot out!)