A few years ago, I hit upon the idea of presenting family and friends with baskets of homemade jam as gifts. With cherries, cinnamon and cloves, this smells and tastes like Christmas! —Marilyn Reineman, Stockton, California
Summer doesn't feel complete without at least one berry picking trip and a batch of homemade blueberry jam. Eat atop fresh scones or biscuits for maximum enjoyment! —Marisa McClellan, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
For a big berry taste, you can't beat this tasty spread. With a flavorful foursome of blackberries, blueberries, raspberries and strawberries, this lovely jam brightens any breakfast.
-Marie St. Thomas, Sterling, Massachusetts
I'm 95, and I still remember my grandmother from Germany making this lovely, delicious conserve for the holidays. She'd give it to family members and friends. It tastes great served as a relish alongside meat or even spread on biscuits.
-Mildred Marsh Banker, Austin, Texas
This zippy and versatile jam was a blue-ribbon winner at our county fair. I mix it with applesauce as a condiment for pork, with cranberry sauce for poultry and with cream cheese as a spread on celery sticks. It's a beautiful color...and in "hot" demand as a gift item!
"For as long as I can remember, my mom has been making this pomegranate jelly and sending us all home with a few jars." To make this jelly even more tangy, substitute cranberry juice for pomegranate juice. —Tatiana Kushnir, Montara, California
"This has been a favorite jam in my family for as long as I can remember," relates Theresa Beckman of Inwood, Iowa. "It's a delicious medley of fruits, including peaches, cherries, pineapple and orange."
This recipe came from my mother-in-law. It's very old-fashioned—in fact, the friend who gave it to her used to cook it up on an old wood stove.
With all the cherry orchards here in Bitterroot Valley, I make two batches of these preserves each summer. (I get the cherries from a nearby cannery by the gallons!) My family likes them on fresh bread, muffins, pancakes and even ice cream—the consistency's similar to a topping. I have to be careful, though, and ration the jars out or they'd be the first thing to disappear from the root cellar!
Both my husband and I serve as 4-H leaders. We have three children—girls 16 and 14 and a son who's 12.
This is a great topping for ice cream, and—since it's thicker than sweetened berries—it's nice over sponge cake or shortcake, too. My family especially enjoys spreading with sour cream and plain yogurt over waffles. In fact, no one ever asks for maple syrup anymore! —Katie Koziolek, Hartland, Minnesota
We enjoy this fiery pepper spread on crackers with cream cheese. It also makes a terrific holiday gift. For a milder flavor and different color, substitute a green bell pepper, jalapeno peppers for the habaneros and green food coloring.