The Apathetic Gourmet: Strawberry preserves, National Post
Posted on July 20th, 2010 by ANNA Magazine
The Apathetic Gourmet: Strawberry preserves
By Maryam Siddiqi, National Post Blogs, August 12, 2009
[Successful strawberry preserves. Photo by Maryam Siddiqi.]
I make a mean spinach and feta omelette. And, well, surely, there must be other things in my cooking repetoire, but nothing comes to mind at the moment. It’s not that I know my way around the kitchen; it’s just that I don’t really care to. But I’m going to change that, one recipe at a time. Scratch that. One easy recipe at a time.
We begin with strawberry preserves. Why? Four ingredients, three of which I already have in my kitchen.
The recipe I followed is from Issue 11 of Anna magazine.
- 7 cups (1.75 L) fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced
- 4 cups (1 L) sugar
- 2 tbsp (30 mL) fresh lemon juice
- 1 pouch liquid pectin
- In large, heavy bottom saucepan, gently mash strawberries. Add sugar and lemon juice. Stir in saucepan over low heat until sugar dissolves.
- Add pectin and stir.
- Increase heat to high and bring mixture to rolling boil; boil 2 minutes.
- Remove from heat and skim off foam.
- Pour into clean canning jars, leaving 1/4-inch head space. Cool slightly. Cover with lids and place in refrigerator. Use within two weeks. Makes 6 cups.
Results: Easy and delicious! True, I used pre-sliced frozen strawberries (thawed, obviously), and was somewhat laissez-faire about the mashing, but I ended up with quality preserves.
Mari Loewen, editor in chief of Anna, was kind enough to answer my rookie questions about this concoction. My main concern was with the mashing — I still has sizeable chunks of berry in the finished product, but Loewen says this isn’t a bad thing. “My personal preference is for chunky, so if you can have pieces of fruit it’s a good thing. Plus, it proves you did it yourself.”
I was also unsure about the whole “remove the foam” thing as is evident above. Loewen reassured me: “Do your best, but it’s from the fruit, so it’s fine to be in there.”
As I’m cooking for one, my last question to Loewen: What am I supposed to do with all these preserves? “You can add it to a smoothie in the morning,” Loewen says, “or put gobs on toast. Have a strawberry sundae for dessert, or buy tart shells, put preserves in each tart and stick it in the oven.” The list goes on.
My arsenal is now one recipe richer.