Blue Sunshine Jam is an original recipe by Renée Joslyn of Freakin’ Flamingo jams in So. Miami, Florida. It is a low-sugar cooked jam made with Pomona’s Pectin. Pomona’s Pectin contains no sugar or preservatives and jells reliably with low amounts of any sweetener. See below for where to buy.
Yield: about 3 cups
Before You Begin:
1. Prepare calcium water. To do this, combine ½ teaspoon calcium powder (in the small packet in your box of Pomona’s pectin) with ½ cup water in a small, clear jar with a lid. Shake well. Extra calcium water should be stored in the refrigerator for future use.
2. Place 2 or 3 small ceramic or freezer-safe glass plates into the freezer to be ready for the gel test.
Blue Sunshine Jam Ingredients
1 large or 2 smaller lemons
2 ½ cups water
2 Tablespoons bottled lemon juice
2 cups blueberries (about 12 oz by weight)
2 teaspoons calcium water
1 ½ cups sugar, divided
1 teaspoon Pomona’s Pectin powder
Blue Sunshine Jam Directions
1. Wash jars, lids, and bands. Place jars in canner, fill canner 2/3 full with water, bring to a boil and boil for 10 minutes to sterilize. Turn off heat, cover, and keep jars in hot canner water until ready to use. Place lids in water in a small saucepan; cover and heat to a low boil. Turn off heat and keep lids in hot water until ready to use.
2. Wash and dry the lemon(s). Cut off the ends and discard. Remove seeds. Cut the lemon(s) into thick slices, cut the slices in half, and pulse in food processor until finely chopped.
3. Put the chopped lemon, water, and bottled lemon juice into a non-reactive medium saucepot (about 4 quart size). Bring to a boil over high heat, cover, reduce heat to medium-high, and allow to boil for 10 minutes.
4. Add the blueberries, Pomona’s calcium water and 1 ¼ cups of the sugar to the pot, stir well until the sugar is dissolved, bring back to a boil and boil for 10 minutes, uncovered.
5. Mix the remaining ¼ cup sugar with the Pomona’s Pectin powder until thoroughly combined and scatter over the blueberry mixture after it has boiled for the 10 minutes. Stir well until pectin is dissolved. Allow to continue to boil for an additional 2 minutes. Remove from heat while performing the gel test.
6. Take one of the plates out of the freezer, place a small spoonful of the hot jam onto the plate and return to the freezer for 2 minutes. If the jam on the plate doesn’t run and wrinkles when you push it with the tip of a spoon or your fingertip, you’re ready to can.
7. If you don’t get a good gel test (and the product on your frozen plate should not just be thick, but should give you some resistance and visibly wrinkle on the surface when the edge is pushed with the tip of a spoon), return the pot to the heat, add another teaspoon of calcium water to the pot, mix another teaspoon of pectin with just a tablespoon or two of sugar, add to the pot, bring to a hard boil while stirring briskly to dissolve the pectin. Boil for an additional 2 minutes, remove from the heat, and test again.
7. Fill hot jars to ¼” of top. Wipe rims clean. Screw on 2-piece lids, fingertip tight. Put filled jars in boiling water to cover. Boil 10 minutes (add 1 minute more for every 1,000 ft. above sea level). Remove from water. Let jars cool. Listen for the ping! Check seals; lids should be sucked down. Eat within 1 year. Lasts 3 weeks once opened.
Note: Don’t try to reduce the amount of sugar in this recipe or replace with other sweeteners; it won’t jell properly.
For more inspiring recipe ideas, see Preserving with Pomona’s Pectin: The Revolutionary Low-Sugar, High-Flavor Method for Crafting and Canning Jams, Jellies, Conserves, and More by Allison Carroll Duffy and the Pomona’s Partners, published by Fair Winds Press, June 2013, and available in paper or ebook everywhere books are sold.
Pomona’s Pectin is available at your local natural food store, food co-op, and many farm stands. Find it also at Sur La Table and a growing number of more conventional grocery stores with natural food sections (Wegmans, Hy-Vee, Rosauers, Nugget Markets, Coborns, Fairway, and others). If you can’t find a store near you on our store locator, you can order from our website or many other online sellers.