The Saskatoon berry is also known as the Service or June berry. They grow wild in the northern states and are widely spread throughout southern and northern parts of Canada. When sun-ripened these berries are very sweet and contain large, soft seeds that are easy to chew.
Both wild and domestic berries are high in natural pectin, likely due to the presence of their large seeds. The saskatoon is a relatively dry berry. For this reason, they combine wonderfully with the strawberry or other fruits high in liquid content.
If new to making jams without commercial pectin, this recipe is a wonderful place to begin.
Saskatoon Strawberry Jam
- 12 C saskatoons
- 6-7 C whole strawberries
- 2/3 C honey
- 2 tsp cinnamon
For a powerful blender: place 6-7 C strawberries and 5 C saskatoons in blender and puree.
For a weaker blender: puree 3 C strawberries. To this add 2 1/2 C of saskatoons. Blend until pureed and pour into a pot. Add another 3 C strawberries to blender and puree. Add 2 1/2 C saskatoons. Puree and pour into the pot.
To the pot: heat the puree and add 7 C of sasktoons to it. If you like less chunk, mash berries before adding. If you like lots of chunk and whole berries in the finished product, put them in whole.
Additives: Add honey and cinnamon, stirring in.
Time: If you used whole berries, you may want to cook them for 15-20 minutes in order to soften. If you mashed the berries to soften sooner, bring to a boil and ensure they are heated throughout.
Processing: Prepare the jars and canner. When water is simmering, ladle hot jam into pint (500 ml) jars. Process according to altitude and size, adding on extra 10 minutes due to the thickness of finished product.
To use: this is an incredibly thick jam. It makes a beautiful layer or topping for cakes, goes well with muffins, on morning waffles or pancakes. You can even add water, some extra honey and your favorite thickener to make a pour-over syrup. The options are endless!