Preserve Summer for Winter with This Strawberry Jam Recipe


Homemade Jam with Bread

Finding the Tastes of Summer During Winter

When the dreary days of winter set in and you long for the wonderful vegetables of spring and summer, what can you do? You can go to the grocery store and purchase some flavorless tomatoes, some uninteresting cucumbers, some anemic strawberries and forget about finding okra and figs.

Or instead you can crack open a jar of canned tomatoes and make a sauce, dig into some crunchy pickles and okra, cut a slice of fresh-baked bread and slather it with fig preserves, or — even better still — with strawberry jam you made the summer before.

Summer means strawberries. Well, and peaches and don’t forget the figs and tomatoes and squash and beans, and black-eyed peas, melons of all sorts, and sweet corn — the list goes on. But sometimes, if you’re lucky, that bounty will lead to excess and you can put that excess to work providing a little treat during dreary weather and allowing you to get excited about what the spring will bring.

My favorite summer treats are strawberries. My home garden doesn’t provide us with much extra, so every couple of years, we find some good ones and load up. We’ll eat them sliced for dessert, make a really good ice cream and, of course, we’ll put up a few jars of jam.

Learning from Grandmother’s Strawberry Preserves

Three years ago, my cousin emailed me a handful of recipes from my grandmother. They were scanned copies of the recipe cards from her recipe box. In the collection was a recipe for Strawberry Preserves.

7/4/2017 8:24:19 AM

Hey Ed, you sound like a terrific and energetic proponent and practitioner of good foods and preservation. However, I must say that I find your strawberry preserves recipe a little bizarre! With all that sugar you do NOT need pectin! Most of us who make jams and preserves in our grandmothers' tradition don't use pectin. I use a 1 to 1 fruit/sugar ratio for strawberry preserves and a 1 to 1/2 for jam. Strawberries are already sooo sweet. I add lemon zest and juice to tone down the sweetness,too.

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