Start to Finish: 1 hour active, 24 hours inactive
Salmonberries are nothing if not striking in both color and taste. A relative to the raspberry, thimbleberry, wild strawberry and cloudberry, salmonberries have characteristics of each, resulting in a flavor that can vary. You can find red, orange and yellow salmonberries, each with a salmon-colored hue, on the same plant. Although one berry might taste slightly different than the next when eaten out-of-hand, in jam their flavors coalesce, resulting in consistency between batches. The following method makes a simple salmonberry jam you can store indefinitely in the freezer or for three weeks after opening in the refrigerator.
- 7 pounds (3 1/2 quarts) of salmonberries
- 5 1/4 cups granulated sugar
- 1 3/4 ounces powdered pectin (1 packet)
- 1-quart canning jar or 2 1-pint canning jars (with lids)
Juicing the Berries
Rinse the salmonberries and let them drain. Add 1/2 cup of water and 4 pounds (2 quarts) of salmonberries to a saucepan and heat them on the stove on low heat. Set the remaining salmonberries aside.
Puree the salmonberries in the saucepan using a stick blender or mash them with a potato masher when the water steams. Transfer the pureed berries to a sieve lined with several layers of cheesecloth.
Set the sieve over a bowl. Press the pureed salmonberries through the cheesecloth using a rubber spatula or the back of a spoon. The cheesecloth will catch the seeds and fibers. After pressing, twist the cheesecloth to wring out any remaining juice from the berries.
Making the Jam
Crush the remaining 3 pounds (1 1/2 quarts) of salmonberries in a mixing bowl. Add the salmonberry juice to the bowl.
Mix 5 1/4 cups of sugar with the juice and salmonberries. Set the mix aside until the sugar granules dissolve, about 10 minutes.
Mix the pectin with 3/4 cup of water in a saucepan and bring the mixture to a vigorous boil. Boil the mixture for 1 minute, stirring continuously.
Stir the boiling pectin mixture into the mixing bowl with the salmonberries. Continue stirring the mixture for 3 minutes.
Transfer the salmonberry jam to the canning jar or jars. Allow 1/2 inch of headspace in the container.
Seal the jars. Let the jam sit at room temperature for 24 hours. Store the jam in the freezer indefinitely. After opening, store the jam in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks.