Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Countdown to Christmas-Everything DIY-Week #1

Welcome to the first posting for Countdown to Christmas- Everything DIY.  For the next seven Wednesdays I will be posting some quick and easy ideas to encourage your inner foodie, decorator, and "gift giver."
Welcome to Week #1-
Making jam is such an easy and rewarding process. It makes great holiday gifts for teachers, mail delivery people, the list is endless. Who doesn't like jam? It is a nice token of "just thinking of you" OR "thank you so much" OR just "Happy Holidays." Accompanied with a jam spoon tied to the side OR wrapped in a beautiful linen towel OR in a gift bag wrapped with a nice piece of Brie. What a  great gift at holiday time.

My oldest daughter happened to stop over when I was beginning to make the jam. I used to make jams and jellies when the girls were little. I guess I never taught them how to make it, because of the safety factor. Working with the boiling mixture and sterilizing jars, in my opinion, is not a good combination for a child. Labeling and wrapping is fun though!

We had a great time making our first jam together........another memory created!

The recipe for Christmas Jam is as follows:


3 cups cranberries
1 orange, peeled and seeded
2 teaspoons orange zest
1 (10 oz.) package frozen strawberries, slightly thawed
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
4 cups sugar
1/2 cup water
1 (3 oz.) packet liquid fruit pectin


  • Combine cranberries (WASH cranberries--PHOTO #1) and sections of seeded orange in a food processor. (PHOTO#2)
  • Pulse until coarsely chopped. 
  • Add strawberries, zest , cloves and cinnamon.
  • Continue processing until finely chopped, but not pureed. (PHOTO #3)
  • Stir together fruit mixture, sugar, and water in a large saucepan. (PHOTO#4)
  • Cook for 2 minutes over low heat, stirring constantly.
  • Increase heat to high and bring mixture to a full rolling boil.
  • Stir in the pectin (PHOTO#5)
  • Stir constantly, bring to a rolling boil and boil for 1 minute. (PHOTO#6)
  • Remove from heat and skim off foam. (PHOTO #6-also)
  • Immediately pour into sterilized #11--4 oz. jam jars (PHOTO#7 & 8) or jar size of your choice leaving 1/4 inch space on top.
  • Carefully wipe clean rims of jars with a damp cloth. 
  • Place lids on jars and screw on bands just until snug.  (PHOTO#9)
  • Process in boiling water bath for 10 minutes.
  • Carefully remove from water bath and cool away from drafts until jars seal. You will hear them pop when they are sealed.

I had some adhesive backed ribbon left-over from Christmas last year so I wrapped just the edge
of the lid with the ribbon. My daughter hand-wrote the labels for me.

I have used a pretty Christmas printed fabric cutting the edge with a pinking shears into a square. Place the fabric over top of the seal and then screw the ring on. I have also used computer
produced labels which can be made a bit fancier than what I chose. There are tons of ways to create pretty creative yourself and personalize your gift.

I hope you enjoyed the first segment of Countdown to Christmas- Everything DIY! Now get busy and make some jam for the special people in your life!

See you Foodie Friday!