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Old 06-30-2006, 06:49 AM   #1
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Question My Jam Is Soupy. I need help.

Well, I LOVE TO COOK and always receive compliments on what i have cooked or baked. HOWEVER, everyone seems to picking strawberries here in New England and decided this was going to be the year I made some jam. Unfortunately, it did NOT turn out at jam consistancy. I'm very disappointed. CAN ANYONE HELP? Someone told me, put it all back in the pot and boil it some more. I did that and it didn't seem to work. It taste great but not thick. i want to make blueberry jam when they riped and don't want to mess that up too!

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Old 06-30-2006, 06:55 AM   #2
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Ciao Mop, and welcome to DC!!
I am not a jam making expert, but from my experience, the cause of the "soupiness" can be you didn't add enough sugar.
True you should use almost the same amount (by the weight) of sugar as the fruit to attain the consistency (though I usually use slightly less, like 1kg of fruit/800g of sugar and comes out fine), and that is a lot of sugar... but there is also an option, you can also add some pectin into the jam then you can get away with much less sugar. Though jams with less sugar have much shorter life cycle, be sure to use it up fairly quickly.
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Old 06-30-2006, 08:49 AM   #3
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Use Sure Jell. Follow the directions. Puree strawberries to make 4C. Add the pectin/SJ. Add the correct amount of sugar. Boil one minute. Put in hot jars.
Same for blueberry except you boil blueberries to make juice and follow the instructions.
With regard to your try, probably not enough sugar and not enough boiling. Use it for syrup. Did you do the test for whether it would jell or not?
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Old 06-30-2006, 10:14 AM   #4
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Just saw Alton Brown's cooking show making jam. He makes everything perfect! Try this link for help http://www.foodnetwork.com/food/show..._15894,00.html
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Old 07-01-2006, 08:25 PM   #5
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We recently had a discussion on Jam Setting Problems that you might wish to check out for some more information on how to solve this problem. If your jam is soupy it's not setting.

Don't know what fruit you were using, what recipe you were using ... but basically all fruit spreads (jams, preserves, butters, jellys) are fruit, acid, sugar, and pectin (if the fruit is low in pectin then some supplimental pectin must be added which can come from a high pectin fruit such as apples or in the form of powdered or liquid pectin), the proper temperature, and sufficient time to cook it to the gelling stage.
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Old 07-01-2006, 11:51 PM   #6
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IF you made it the boiled down method.... no added pectin... you must boil until it sheets off a spoon... means it is very thick.
4 C mashed strawberries
3 C sugar
1/3 C lemon juice.
Mash berries, let sit overnight, add lemon juice bring to a hard boil stirring constantly until thick... sheets from a spoon. Pour into hot jars and seal. Boiling takes 15-20 min. You can use 6 C berries, 4 1/2 C sugar, 1/2 C lemon juice but I would not make a larger recipe.
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Old 07-04-2006, 01:33 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Swann
... but I would not make a larger recipe.
Very good point Swann - follow the recipe!!! as per batch size, and processing. While you might get by cutting a recipe in half - you're only asking for trouble if you try to double it ....
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Old 07-07-2006, 09:37 PM   #8
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I am thinking the fruit was possibly overripe. You really have to use berries right away after picking for optimal freshness. If you bought them already picked, some of the use time is already gone.
As fruit ripens, it loses its natural pectin.
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Old 07-21-2006, 09:51 AM   #9
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I just had the exact same problem. Tried 2 things to start this whole canning gig--raspberry jam and strawberry jam. THe rapsberry jam turned out absolutely perfect through and through--problem is, I don't like raspberry jam (lady of the house does)

My strawberry jam turned out just like yours did--kind of a syrupy consistency and all the strawberries are floating up at the top. I figure either I didn't crush the strawberries well enough (Just used my hands and mauled em) or I must have miscalculated how much a quart of strawberries weigh (I figured 1.25 pounds per quart--2 quarts of strawberries, 1/4 cup lemon juice, 7 cups of sugar, 1 packet of powdered pectin), cause I followed the recipe to the letter...just didn't take.
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Old 07-21-2006, 09:57 AM   #10
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Just make a bunch of pancakes and waffles to use up the "syrup." My mom made a batch of soupy jam once and that is what we did.
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Old 07-21-2006, 10:04 AM   #11
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Strawberry jam is notoriously difficult to get it to set. Sometimes a batch will work and you'll do it again, do everything the same, and it won't.
Reboiling with extra pectin (jamsetta we call it) might do the job. Also add some lemon juice as well to be sure.
I've never had a problem with overripe strawberries particularly, as long as you add enough pectin.
Sorry it didn't work for you, but tip it in your pan and try again.
Oh and on the pan, what are you using? For jam it needs to be a wide shallow ish pan rather than a deep one, as the heat needs to evenly distributed throughout.
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Old 07-21-2006, 10:18 AM   #12
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I used to make lots of jams & jellies, and I always used Sure-Jell. I never had a failure.
But...those strawberries would be wonderful over ice cream.
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Old 07-21-2006, 10:19 AM   #13
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Or even better, pancakes and icecream!
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Old 07-21-2006, 01:18 PM   #14
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or Belgian waffles, ice cream and strawberry syrup.
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Old 07-30-2006, 02:09 PM   #15
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Sometimes it is because there isn't enough acidity in the fruit. All is not lost. Pour it back in a stainless steel pan and boil gently until it coats the back of a stainless steel spoon fairly thickly. Pour into your newly clean and sterilized jars and top with new hot lids and the rings. Wah La!
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