Friday, June 7, 2013

Strawberry bonanza

Barbara's strawberry patch has gone crazy in the last sunny days. This morning David brought over a huge basketful that filled my largest bowl.

First I used about three pounds (i.e., 1.24kg, stemmed weight) to make 2 quarts for making my Grandmother Katie's Strawberry Preserves. Used my basket gadget for cooking multiple rounds of pasta for dropping the berries into boiling water for a minute. For the first 4 cups of sugar, I used up my Dutch witte basterd zuiker topped up with regular white sugar. For the second 2 cups, I used sucre de canne (a natural brown cane sugar). The preserves are now in sit-and-stir mode for three days before they get canned. (I'll freeze the jars rather than topping with paraffin.)

Katie's Strawberry Preserves
– 2 quarts strawberries (about 3 pounds)
– 4 cups sugar
– 2 cups sugar
As Katie wrote the directions:
Wash and stem 2 qts of strawberries. Put berries in colander; drop in boiling water for 1 minute. Then put berries into a kettle; put 4 cups sugar on berries and boil 3 minutes. Add 2 cups sugar and bboil 3 minutes aagain or longer. Pour into a bowl. Let stand 3 days, stirring 2 or 3 times a day. Seal cold, cover with paraffin. (Can stand longer than 3 days.)
Yield: TBD

Also made some Strawberry Balsamic Jam . Not quite enough brown sugar on hand, so topped up with a bio sucre de canne with pectin. (How can I have missed refilling both white and brown sugars?!) Hope it isn't too thick because of that bit of pectin. Had about 3.8# dressed weight (stemmed and chunked), so adjusted other ingredients upwards slightly.

Strawberry Balsamic Jam
– 3 pounds fresh, ripe strawberries
– 2 cups granulated Sugar
– 1/3 cup lemon juice
Wash the strawberries, remove the tops and coarsely chop. Place the strawberries, sugar, and lemon juice in a heavy bottomed pot and bring to a boil.
Boil over medium high heat stirring frequently, and skimming off the foam for 20 minutes.
Reduce the heat to a slow boil, and continue to cook until the jam has almost set, about 45 minutes to an hour.
– 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
– 2 teaspoons black pepper, optional
Add the balsamic vinegar and pepper if using and mix well. Cook for another 5 to 10 minutes.
Test to see if your jam has set (see below).
Sterilize your jars and lids and while still hot fill with the jam leaving about a 1/2-inch headspace.
Place lids onto the jars and boil in a water bath with jars covered by 3 inches of water for 10 minutes.
Turn off the heat and let sit an additional 5 minutes before removing from the water bath.
Place the jars on counter and let sit untouched for 6 hours before storing.
Refrigerate after opening. 
Yield: 3 AH fond jars, about 1.5 cups each
Kaye's notes:
  • Found this recipe on the web. Last year I also made the version with black pepper. We decided that, while that was plenty good, the plain version was even better. 
  • To test if your jam has set, place a small plate in the freezer before you begin to make your jam. When you think your jam has thickened enough, take a small spoonful and drop it onto your plate and place the plate in the refrigerator for a minute or two. Take the plate and hold it sideways. The jam should be thick enough to mound on the plate and not run off.
  • The recipe is advertised to make four pint jars. For two years now, I've gotten much less than this. Three 3/4-pints is about what it makes for me.

No comments:

Post a Comment