Gluten Free Strawberry Jam Recipe

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by Carol Kicinski on April 22, 2010

Many summers ago I woke up with an almost overwhelming urge to connect with the brave frontier women who came before me by taking perfectly sun ripened fruit and turning it into jam thus preserving the bounty of the harvest for the long hard winter to come.

I set off early, purchasing enormous pots, sterilizing equipment, cute jars and flats of peaches. Happy with my haul (and poorer by about $250.00) I got to work. I blanched, peeled and pitted. I washed and sterilized. I boiled, simmered and stirred, all the while humming a wordless tune I was certain my fore-mothers had hummed many moons ago.

And then it happened! What can only be described as an apocalyptic catastrophe turned my peaceful afternoon into a scene so horrendous it would surely be rated NC-17 (for violence) if life were rated the way movies are. Jars started exploding, shooting out shards of glass covered with sticky, icky goo everywhere. The shards embedded themselves into the cabinets, walls and ceiling dropping fat splatters of peachy tar over every surface.

I plucked goopy glass from my hair, arms and feet. I washed and scrubbed and mopped. I cursed my fore-mothers so loudly and vehemently it would have brought a blush to Joe Pesci’s face.

At the end of a very long, arduous day I surveyed the fruits of my labor. I had one $250.00 jar of slightly brownish, uncongealed peach jam, a spotless kitchen and a body covered with Hello Kitty Band-Aids.

It was then that I realized that those brave frontier women who came before me didn’t have a choice. They had to preserve the fruits of the harvest lest they stave during the cold hard winters. I also realized I lived in California where the winters are anything but cold and hard, that I have a damn car and can go to the damn store and buy some damn jam.

That was the end of my jam making until recently. I got swept away by the gorgeous strawberries at the market selling for a pittance and brought home far more than I could consume before they went bad. What to do?

 

I decided I would make jam again. But this time on my terms. Forget those damn frontier women. So I came up with what is possibly the easiest jam known to man (and certainly to those fore-mothers of mine). It also happens to be granulated sugar and pectin free jam. And yes, of course, it is gluten free as well.

So if you like slaving like a dog for your jam, then skip this recipe. If on the other hand you want to revel in luscious jam that is ridiculously easy, then by all means read on.

Gluten Free Sugar Free Strawberry Jam

Gluten Free Strawberry Jam Recipe

Ingredients

1 pound fresh strawberries, hulled, rinsed and halved
½ cup agave nectar

Directions

Combine strawberries and agave in a heavy saucepan over medium high heat and bring to a boil. Lower the heat so that the mixture continues to boil gently. Stir the mixture a few times while cooking to prevent sticking or scorching and mash the berries a few times, a potato masher works well for this or you can use the back of a spoon.

Continue cooking for 25 minutes or until the berries have broken down and the mixture is very thick. Cool to room temperature. Mixture will thicken and jell up as it cools.

Store in a clean jar for up to a week.

Servings

Makes 1 cup of gluten free  jam.

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Categories:    Condiments & Sauces
  • Iris

    Great post! I can only imagine the sight of all those glasses breaking. Sounds like something that would happen to me. I like simple…this recipe is right up my alley.

  • Lisa (bakebikeblog)

    oh my – I totally had a similar previous jam making experience! Not fun at all!!!!

  • Peter G @ Souvlaki For The Soul

    This does look dead easy…I couldn't be bothered fussing around with pectin etc… Thanks for sharing Carol!

  • Britt

    This jam looks great!

    That's really too bad that you had such a horrible experience with canning, though. I started this past fall and, while it is certainly a lot of work, found it to be meditative and had nothing but success. The experience of opening those jars that I filled months later is incomparable. Such a shame that your first go was filled with glass shards and goo! :(

  • Stephanie

    Yum, love the simplicity of this recipe! And I really love that first photo you posted. Makes me want to dip my fingers in the bowl :)

  • Lauren

    Gorgeous photos. The jam sounds and looks fantastic! I try to stick with non-refined sweeteners, so this recipe is right up my alley. Can't wait to make it!

  • Diane-The WHOLE Gang

    Now that sounds like something I would do. Glad to hear you were not seriously hurt and neither was anyone else. I think if that would have been me there may have been some other things flying around the kitchen.

    Love the easy recipe. Can't wait to give it a try.

  • Tasty Eats At Home

    Wow, I cannot imagine such a disaster with canning! I've canned a few times – never jam, but I've done pickles. While it is an "event" with all the sterilization and whatnot, it's definitely nothing like what you've experienced! This jam sounds delicious. I wonder if it would freeze well – cause I'm all about easy jam that I could make in bucketloads AND freeze!

  • Nadette

    I found you on foodgawker, and was intrigued by this idea of "dead easy" jam.
    1. your back story-f'n hilarious!
    2. this looks so easy, i'm actually considering making it–and i don't make jam!

  • afreshdille

    Mmm this looks so yummy, I must make some jam. I haven't canned and honestly, am a little afraid to try…

  • Jenn/CinnamonQuill

    Brilliant; I can't wait for strawberry season here. I've got this bookmarked. Does it freeze well, me wonders…

  • Tina

    I just made this about an hour ago. It was so quick and easy. I did not use a pound of strawberries though, I used a quart and it was perfect. It filled up exactly four of the little 125 ml jars and they are now resting and cooling off in the fridge so I will have to post later how the consistency turns out…..but I did give it a little taste and it was sweet and yummy and I can't wait to put some on a nice warm piece of whole grain toast!!!!

  • Kristy Tillman

    That looks awesome!!! I wonder if you could do that with frozen fruit if you couldn't get fresh? Would this freeze well or has anyone attempted to can it?

  • Anonymous

    I want to know if it would can well in a water bath canner. I want to give some sugar free jam as gifts and that is so much easier to do if canned.

  • Kristina

    Can you freeze this jam???

    • http://www.simplygluten-free.com Carol, Simply Gluten Free

      I didn’t try it but I do not see why it wouldn’t work. I kept some in my fridge for a few days but it got all eaten up pretty quickly. It is strawberry season again here in Florida, I may have to make some and try freezing it – if I do I will let you know.

  • Nancy

    Greetings Italian Sister!
    I need, really NEED a gelatin recipe for Wed…How do I make jello – clear, with no white sugar….this is for a medical test ….can you help?

    • http://www.simplygluten-free.com Carol, Simply Gluten Free

      Oh my – this is stumping me. Can you use any kind of sweetener? Do you need to eat it? I would start with unflavored gelatin but need more info to really answer this properly.

  • Sara

    Awww man… I’m alergic to agave nectar. It looks delish though!

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  • http://wheatfreelivingandme.blogspot.com Sharon

    Looks quick, easy, and delicious! I can’t wait till strawberries are in season to give this a try!
    Sharon

    • Carol Kicinski

      Thanks Sharon, it is so easy and strawberry season is right aqound the corner! Enjoy!

  • Jennifer

    Can you use honey instead of the agave nectar?

    • Carol Kicinski

      I believe so but honey may evaporate quicker so watch it. It will give your jam a “honey flavor” but that can’t be bad, right?

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