Monday, June 27, 2011

Blueberry Vanilla Bean Jam

More blueberries and more jam!  I decided to take some of the beautiful blueberries that I got at Costco and make blueberry jam.  I really wanted to add something to jazz up the flavor a little, though.  I ended up scraping out an entire vanilla bean pod into the jam and it was just the flavor I was looking for.  This is another recipe that I got from my "In a Pickle or a Jam" cookbook, circa 1971.  Luckily, things like this are pretty timeless, with the exception of how the final product is sealed (like I mentioned in a previous post, most of the recipes call for sealing with paraffin wax.)

This was a small batch, since I am still learning about canning, I didn't want to use up all my blueberries, plus we still wanted some for things like snacks and blueberry pancakes.

Blueberry Vanilla Bean Jam
(yields 1 1/2 pints)

3 cups blueberries
1/2 lemon, juiced and zested
3 1/2 cups sugar
1 vanilla bean

Prepare your jars.  I used 1 pint jar and 1 half pint jar.  I would have used all half pint jars, but I only had two lids left.

Combine blueberries, lemon zest and juice, and sugar in a stockpot. Heat very slowly over low heat, mashing blueberries with a potato masher or ricer.  Once mixture comes to a boil, add seeds from vanilla bean and mix in thoroughly.

Boil mixture rapidly until jam is set, mixing often.  I used my candy thermometer to keep track of the temperature and once it reached 220F, I started testing it using the cold plate method.  I had a plate in the freezer and put a little of the jam on it.  When the jam jelled up after being put on the plate, it was ready.  This took about 10 minutes for me.

Once it is ready, fill the prepared jars, wipe the rims, seal and process.

The vanilla added just the right flavor.  I plan to buy some more blueberries and double the recipe sometime soon.  I want to make sure I have enough of this one to last all winter!

And somehow, I must have been really involved because I neglected to take a single picture of the process on this one, until the jars were sealed and processed.


  1. Sounds delicious! I'm new to canning and I was wondering why you don't use pectin. I'm also hoping you have more detailed directions on what you do once you fill the jars. So far I've only made strawberry freezer jam. Can't wait to try this!

  2. I find some things require pectin and some don't. Strawberries and blueberries seem to have enough natural pectin in them.