Super Yummy Sour Cherry Lime Jam Recipe!

Cherry season came very early for us this year.  Usually, we are picking in the middle of June, and there are almost two weeks to finish the harvest from our one tree.  This year, however, they ripened too early, and the flies were starting to eat at them before they were close to being fully ripe. (This was devastating, as we love making dried cherries as our first choice.)

I took the opportunity to pick them a little on the sour side with the thought I would make jam.  I noticed that I had a couple of limes in my fridge that I didn't know what to do with, so I began searching for cherry lime jam recipes.  I settled on this one, as it made a small batch -- something I thought I should stick to for my first time making jam!

Here's the process from start to finish:

1.  Pick and rinse your cherries.  Pit them (I love this pitter I found that lets me pit 4 cherries at a time!)

2.  Chop your cherries.  I use a cheapo $4 food chopper I got from a Black Friday sale 6 years ago!  Be careful not to chop them too long if you like big chunks in your jam.

3.  Assemble your ingredients.  In addition to 3.5 cups chopped cherries, you'll need:
  • 1/2 cup apple juice (I used a cherry apple juice blend)
  • 1 box 1.75 oz. of Sure-Jell pectin 
  • 3 cups sugar 
  • zest of 1/2 a lime

4.  Now it's time to cook! I followed the original recipe exactly.  First, I brought the cherries, juice, and pectin to a boil, and then I added in my sugar and lime zest.  When the complete mixture is at a boil, I continued to keep it on the burner for 1 minute before removing.

5.  Fill your clean jars, place the clean lids on top, and then put them in a boiling water canning bath for 15 minutes.  I admit that I didn't have the best boil when I did this, and I had to leave them in a bit longer.  I think this is ultimately what made my jam a bit thin, but this is actually my preference.  We use our "jam" for both a toast topper and a syrup substitute (cherry syrup is expensive!)

6.  Remove the jars and wait for the "ping."  This is music to a cook's ears!

This recipe is supposed to make 4 half pint jars, but mine made almost 5 (I think it's because my cherries were so juicy and I overcooked the jam.)  The finished product is a super-sweet and tangy jam that is perfect on pancakes or straight out of the jar.  Yum!  This is also a great recipe for cherries that aren't quite at their peak ripeness.