Step 1: Ingredients and Supplies
1 1/2 lbs . Blueberries (fresh or frozen)
3 cups Sugar
1/2 cup Water
2 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
5 Tablespoons (2 1/2 oz) Cider Vinegar
1/4 teaspoon Star Anise (finely ground)
1/4 teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
10 - 20 grinds fresh Nutmeg (1/4 teaspoon pre-ground)
1 (1 3/4 oz) Packet of dry Pectin
Large Stockpot or Canning Kettle
Medium Large Saucepan
Long Set of Pliers or a magnetic Lid-Wand (something for grabbing the lids)
Canning Funnel (optional, but highly recommended)
Canning Tongs (again, optional, but highly recommended)
6 (8 oz.) Jars (with rings and lids)
Dish Towel or Canning Rack (for holding the cans off of the bottom of the pot)
Step 2: Making the Jam
2. Place blueberries in the saucepan over medium-low heat. Sprinkle with the pectin, followed by the cider vinegar, spice mixture, and lemon juice.
3. Once liquid starts to gather in the bottom of the saucepan, bring the heat up to high, and bring to a boil.
4. After reaching a boil, lower the heat slightly and boil gently for 5 minutes, mashing it occasionally.
5. Mash in the sugar, and add the water. Return to a boil for 1 minute.
Congratulations! You've just made jam! Now, to the preserving section!
Step 3: Preparing the Jars
1. Wash all hardware (everything that is ever going to touch the jam) thoroughly in hot soapy water.
2. Fill your stockpot 3/4 of the way full with water, and put your dish towel/canning rack into the bottom.
3. Place ALL hardware (excluding lids) into the stockpot so that it is completely submerged by at least 1 inch.
4. Bring to a boil, cover and continue to boil for at least 10 minutes.
5. Turn off the heat, wait 5 minutes, and then add the lids.
Step 4: Canning the Jam
2. Using the jar tongs, remove the jars from the pot, and place them carefully on the towel. Avoid rock or metal surfaces which could cause thermal damage.
3. Place the funnel in the first jar, (be sure to pick it up by the ring, avoiding the sterile interior). Use the ladle to fill each jar to the bottom of the funnel. The extra space, called 'headspace' is needed for a proper seal.
4. Use your pliers/magnetized device to carefully position the lids on top of the jars, being careful not to touch them.
5. Screw the rings as hard as you can (using only your fingers) and be checking for cracks and fractures at the same time.
Step 5: Preserving the Jars
2. Using the tongs, carefully lower the filled jars under water. They have to be completely submerged, and shouldn't be touching the bottom, nor each other.
3. Bring to a hard boil, for however long is necessary (look at chart*). But be sure not to start your timer until a true boil is reached.
4. Once that is done, remove you jars with the tongs, and let them sit for at least 24 hours before opening.
* Processing times: Within 1,000 feet of sea level: 5 minutes
1,000 - 3,000 feet above sea level: 10 minutes
3,001- 6,000 feet above sea level: 15 minutes
6,000 - 8,000 feet above sea level: 20 minutes
Above 8,000 feet: wait until you're back down at base camp