Serves: Makes 5-6 jars
This is pretty much my classic strawberry jam recipe but with the rather exotic hint of Attar of Roses. The leaves of the scented pelargonium give off the most heavenly rose scent and here they are used to gently flavour the jam. Strawberries are particularly good this year due to the warm dry spring and making a batch of fruit jam heralds the start of summer –if we’re lucky a long hot one (weather not playing ball yet …) Everything has been so unusual this year I have found it extremely comforting to complete the seasonal tasks like making jam.
Remember to start 24 hours in advance as the strawberries are left to macerate overnight.
- 1.5kg strawberries, hulled and halved or quartered if large
- 7 rose geranium leaves
- 1 kg preserving sugar
- 500g caster sugar
- Juice of one lemon
- Put the strawberries in a very large bowl. Tear the rose geranium leaves into small pieces. In a separate bowl mix together the preserving sugar and caster sugar and rub in the rose geranium leaves until they start to scent the sugar.
- Tip the sugar and leaves into the strawberries and mix well. Cover the bowl and leave in the fridge overnight.
- The next day tip the strawberries and sugar into a preserving pan (don’t attempt to make this quantity of jam in a normal sized saucepan) and stir gently over a low heat until the sugar has dissolved. Turn the heat up and bring the mixture to the boil. Continue to cook until the jam reaches 105˚c. This can take from anything between 10-20 minutes depending on how much liquid the strawberries produce and how fast you boil the jam. To test for a set, turn the heat off and put a spoonful of jam on a chilled plate. Leave in the fridge for five minutes then push the jam across the plate with your finger. If the surface of the jam wrinkles and lightly holds its shape it is set.
- Leave the jam for fifteen minutes, stir it to distribute the fruit and spoon into sterilised jars. Cover with a waxed disc and a lid or cellophane covering.