Strawberry and Thyme Jam
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Adapted from Kitchen Magic by Gizzi Erskine
  • 1kg strawberries, washed, hulled and cut into quarters
  • 1kg jam sugar
  • 4 fresh thyme sprigs, leaves stripped
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • 1 knob butter
  1. The night before you wish to make the jam, stir together the strawberries and half the sugar in a large bowl and cover tightly with clingfilm and macerate in the fridge overnight. I did this over two nights but it really doesn't matter if it is one or two nights – it just helps to speed up the process when it comes to actually cooking the jam.
  2. The day you wish to make the jam, pour the strawberries and the sugary juices into a large pot (like a le creuset) or a traditional berry pan and stir in the thyme leaves, lemon juice and the remaining sugar.
  3. Wash and dry your glass jam jars then draw around the bottom of each jar on baking parchment and cut out for when you seal the jars. You will then need to sterilise them – I do this in the oven by placing the jars and their lids on a baking sheet at 100oc and keeping warm until the jam is ready. You can also do this in a hot cycle on a dishwasher if you like. You will also need to place a freezer proof saucer in the freezer as well, which will help you check the jam is ready.
  4. Place the pan containing the berries over a low heat and stir until the sugar has dissolved then turn up the heat to a rolling boil. Set a timer for 10 minutes and let the jam boil, keeping an eye on it and stirring in case it gets too hot and spills over the side of the pan.
  5. Once the 10 minutes is up, remove the plate from the freezer and drop a small amount of jam on the plate. Wait a few seconds then push with your finger – it should wrinkle and not swirl around the plate like a liquid. If this hasn’t happened yet, place the plate back in the freezer and repeat, setting a timer for 2 minutes for each test. It took me around 6-8 minutes at this point but depending on the pan, heat and how long you left the strawberries to macerate, it could take up to 30.
  6. Once ready, remove from the heat and remove any scum that has risen to the top of the pan with a spoon and discard. Stir through the butter and leave to cool for 10 minutes, which will ensure the strawberries won’t sink to the bottom when jarred. Remove the jars from the oven and ladle the jam into a clean jug, carefully pouring into each jam jar. I managed around three jars, but it will depend on their size and shape as to how many you can make. Place the small baking parchment discs on top of each jar, pressing down to create a seal and then using a kitchen towel or mitt, screw the lids of the jars on tightly whilst the jam is still hot. Label and store in a cool, dark place for up to one year.
Recipe by Victoria Sponge Pease Pudding at