by Priya Krishna in Contests, August 2nd, 2012
by Marisa McClellan in How-to, Recipes, August 26th, 2011
Summer is known for its bounty of seasonal fruits and vegetables. Unfortunately, as soon as the summer fades, so too do the juicy strawberries, succulent peaches, sweet tomatoes and the amazing dishes that come with them. With Ball Freezer Jars, however, you can preserve your favorite foods to enjoy year-round. With their locking lid design and leak proof seal, you can store everything from summer jams to soups for long periods of time without having to worry about anything going bad.
You can buy your own freezer jars, which come in both 8 oz. and 16 oz. sizes, or enter in the comment field below for a chance to win a pack of three 8 oz. jars. To enter: Tell us your favorite Food Network summer dish to freeze and enjoy during the colder seasons in the comments. We’re giving away a set of three 8 oz. freezer jars to six lucky, randomly selected commenters.
Read the official rules before entering
When it comes to canning, blueberries were my gateway fruit. During my childhood, I helped my mom make jam with the berries from our annual picking trip. Later, blueberry jam was the first thing I ever canned on my own (though I did call my parents for guidance at least seven times during the making of that initial batch). Spiced with a little bit of cinnamon, nutmeg and lemon zest, it tastes like home.
The beauty of blueberry jam is that it sets you up for success. Blueberries contain a lot of natural pectin, so even if you mash and measure imperfectly, nine times out of 10, you’ll still wind up with something spreadable and quite delicious.
What’s more, preparing blueberries for jamming is shockingly easy. All they need is a quick rinse, a careful once-over to remove any stems (don’t throw away the mushy berries, they work just fine in jam) and a thorough smashing. I find it quite satisfying to just plunge my hands in and start squashing. A potato masher is an acceptable substitute if you don’t like to get your hands covered in blueberry goo.