Making strawberry rhubarb jam

This afternoon Rose invited me over to her house to teach me how to make strawberry rhubarb jam.  She had me buy some pint-sized jars, a bag of sugar, and some strawberry Jello.  We picked rhubarb out of her back yard.

Rhubarb here grows thick and tall.  The leaves are the size of dinner plates.  We picked some of the thickest stocks of rhubarb and cut it up into pieces.  We put five cups of rhubarb into a kettle with four cups of sugar and a tiny bit of water.  We heated it to boiling, mashing it up some with a potato masher, and let it boil for three minutes.  Then we took it off the heat and slowly added one package of Jello mix.  In the meantime Rose boiled the lids to some of the jars and washed the jars themselves.  When the jam was ready we scooped it into the jars, put the lids on and screwed the rings on tightly.  Then we turned the jars upside down to help them seal better.  When we turned the jars right side up again, periodically we’d hear a little “pop!” as the lids sort of imploded.

While all of this was going on, I got to visit with Rose and Jerry and Mike.  Rose is a tough old lady because of all the things she’s been through up here.  I do believe she could handle just about anything!

After I left her house, I stopped in at the office and left a couple jars of jam with my co-workers.  I have been eager to open one and try it, but Mark says it hasn’t set completely yet.  He’s been through canning season many times before and says it will probably be twenty-four hours before I can open one of the jars to sample the jam.  Oh well, at least I got to lick the spoon!

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