When my kids were in day care – I had no idea how lucky I was that I didn’t have to provide food. The day care they went to served breakfast, lunch and a morning and afternoon snack – all cooked on the premises by “the cooker” as my girls called her. It was my older daughter that coined the phrase, and it stuck – and to this day, it still makes me smile. When my girls started school – I was actually excited to start making them lunches. That lasted a few weeks. Years later, it is one of the chores I dread the most. I have run out of ideas, and feel like I am giving them the same things day after day. They are always asking me to pack their thermos, but the problem is that I have to be home in the morning (with some extra time) to do that – and normally I leave so early in the morning that I pack their lunches the night before.
My older daughter is a cold-cut person – she just wants her meat and cheese – hold the bread. My younger daughter on the other hand, is all about the bread – and wants peanut butter and jelly every day. That was never something I liked as a kid, and my older daughter is the same way. I would ask for a PB&J, hold the J. What I realized recently is the bread is important, but the jelly is critical. She has become quite the jam/jelly aficionado – I think I have mentioned this before on the blog, but she refuses now to eat any jam/jelly that is not homemade by me. I have ruined her for life. Her favorite? She has lots of favorites, including this raspberry jam from Food in Jars. As you can see by the jar, there was hardly any left to take a picture of! I wasn’t able to make a big batch the first time – but let me tell you – as soon as the raspberries show up at the fruit stand down the street – I will be making jars of this stuff. Enough to last for months – because she loves it that much.
If anyone has any interesting ideas of lunches for my kids, I would love to hear them. I have 10 lunches to make, just this week – OH WAIT!! No school on Friday – hooray for that, and only 8 lunches to go until the weekend!!
Blog update…I thought I lost the original pictures that I took of the jam, but somehow they appeared! Now you can see the full jar below.
- 6 cups crushed raspberries (about 2 dry quarts)
- 4 cups of sugar
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 1 packet (3-ounces) liquid pectin
Fill your canning pot with water and begin to bring it to temperature. Wash your jars and rings in warm soapy water and set aside. Put your lids in a small pot of water and heat (but do not boil) in order to soften the sealing compound.
Combine the crushed berries and sugar in a large pot and stir to combine. Bring to a boil over high heat and stir frequently until all berries have broken down and the bubbles look thick and viscous, about 15-20 minutes. Add the pectin and lemon juice and bring to a rolling boil for a full five minutes.
Turn off the heat under the jam and fill jars. Wipe rims and apply lids. Screw on the bands and lower into the water. Process in the hot water bath 10 minutes. When time is up, remove from water and cool on the counter. When the jars are cooled, check the seal by pressing on the top of the jar. If there’s no movement, the jar has sealed. Store up to one year in a cool, dark place.
Makes 4 pints.
For a printer-friendly version of this recipe, please click here: Raspberry Jam