Strawberries are Ripe for Pick’N!

strabrryIt’s officially strawberry picking time here in Michigan. While we’ve been harvesting and enjoying our own strawberries from the garden, last week local U-Pick farms hung out the shingle for strawberries. So, yesterday afternoon the four of us visited a local farm to pick fresh strawberries! The fields were full of the sweet berries and we filled a tray in what seemed only minutes…under a half-hour anyway. That equates to over 15 pounds of berries at $1.49 per pound.

After dinner, a quick taco salad, we all pitched in and helped to turn the fresh berries into freezer jam that will give us pleasure all winter long – YUM!

I’ve been making strawberry freezer jam as long as I can remember – it’s a family favorite. BTW, makes nice gifts too.  I simply follow the directions on the Sure-Jel (pectin) box. Basically, remove the stems and wash the berries. Next, I crush the berries with my pastry blender; measure 4 cups of crushed strawberries (do not double the recipe…rather, make seperate multiple batches). Put the berries aside momentarily. Measure the sugar into a saucepan and stir in the pectin. Add 1 cup of water and stir constantly…bring to a boil & stir for one minute. Remove from heat and add the pre-measured crushed strawberries. Stir for another minute and spoon into freezer jars. I use recycled plastic butter tubs. Label and allow to set at room temp for 24 hours, then put in the freezer. Very simple. Any leftover berries are great as topping or how about a well deserved frozen margarita?

Get the family/friends involved and make light work of ‘putting up’ jam! You’ll be glad come mid-February!

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