Lavender transforms ordinary blueberry jam into preserves that are positively romantic. Delicate and floral, it would be perfect with scones, croissants, or crostini with fresh ricotta.
- 2 tablespoons dried lavender buds
- 8 cups fresh blueberries
- 4 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- Zest and juice of one lemon
- One (1.75-ounce) package low sugar powdered pectin, such as Sure Jell
- 1/2 teaspoon unsalted butter
If you are going to preserve jam, prepare jars and lids: place 8 half-pint jars on rack in large pot. Add enough water to cover jars, and bring to boil over high heat. Boil for 10 minutes, then turn off heat and allow jars to rest in the hot water. Meanwhile, put bands and lids in small saucepan and cover with water. Heat over medium heat until the water is simmering, then remove pan from heat and allow bands and lids to rest in hot water until ready to use.
Put the lavender buds in a small bowl and pour 1/2 cup of boiling water over them. Let them steep for 10 minutes, then strain the "tea" into a bowl and discard the buds.
Working in batches if necessary, pulse blueberries in blender until coarsely crushed. You should have about 6 cups.
Measure 4 1/4 cups of sugar in one bowl. In another bowl, combine remaining 1/4 cup sugar and pectin.
Combine blueberries, lemon zest and juice, and lavender tea in large, heavy saucepan or stockpot. Stir in sugar-pectin mixture and the butter. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly.
Add remaining sugar all at once. Return to a full rolling boil. Boil for one minute. Remove jam from heat and skim off any foam from surface.
Ladle hot jam into hot sterilized jars, leaving 1/4-inch headspace. Wipe rims of the jars, cover with lids, and screw bands on until just barely tight. Place jars on rack in pot and cover completely with water. Cover pot and bring to a boil over high heat. Boil for 10 minutes. Turn off heat, uncover pot, and allow jars to rest in water for five minutes. Remove jars from pot and allow them to rest undisturbed on countertop for six hours or overnight.