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Strawberry jam
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The perfect conserve for freshly baked scones. Strawberries are low in pectin, the natural gelling agent which helps jam to set, so you need to use a special jam sugar with added pectin to ensure it thickens and the strawberries distribute evenly throughout. Warming the sugar first ensures it dissolves easily and more quickly when you add it to the pan.

Strawberry jam

Wash and hull the strawberries. Put them in a preserving pan with the sugar, lemon zest and juice and the vanilla seeds. Place the pan over a low heat to gently dissolve the sugar, and stir with a wooden spoon to help it on its way. Pop a couple of saucers in the freezer.

Increase the heat and bring the mixture to a rolling boil. Boil gently for 3-4 minutes until setting point is reached. To test for a set, take the pan off the heat and spoon some of the jam onto a cold saucer. Draw your finger across the middle – if it wrinkles, it’s ready to pot.

Stir in the butter and skim off any scum that’s still lying on the surface. Allow to stand for 10 minutes then spoon into hot sterilised jars, top with waxed discs and seal with lids. The jam will store for up to a year in a cold place.

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