Huzzah! Strawberry season is here! Every year, I look forward to The Market in Maryville getting the first shipments of strawberries in from South Carolina, and last week it finally happened. Over the past 5 days, I have eaten more strawberry shortcake than most Americans will eat all year long. No regrets. So today, I thought I’d share with you one of my very favorite recipes: strawberry jam.
2 lbs strawberries (it’s usually 2 containers)
1/4 cup sugar
3/4 of a peeled green apple (a natural pectin… i.e. the stuff that helps it turn to jelly)
1 tsp orange rind
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
- Top & hull the strawberries.
- Use a food processor to chop berries into smaller pieces or just squish them up with your hands.
- Throw the green apple into the food processor as well or finely chop.
- Stir in sugar, orange rind, & cinnamon.
- In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, bring the entire mixture to a boil.
- Turn down and simmer for 30 minutes to an hour, stirring every 5-10 minutes.*
- Once your jam reaches the consistency you desire, place in jars and let cool completely. Once it’s completely cool, store it in the fridge.
*For the first 20 minutes or so, you’ll need to remove the foam that accumulates on the top. The foam is really just a result of the boiling jam. It won’t really affect the taste, but it will prevent your jam from reaching the right consistency.
The best thing about strawberry jam is that it will make your house smell like the perfect Spring evening. It’s equally as yummy on toast as it is on shortbread, and while I’d suggest canning it, I can almost guarantee your batch won’t last that long. So turn on some Nat King Cole, curl up on the couch with your honey, and enjoy the natural aphrodisiac of Strawberry Jam. You can thank me later.
Is making jam just not enough for you? Consider heading to Dayton, Tennessee this weekend for the annual Strawberry Festival. Just looking for a new dessert? Might I recommend Alton Brown’s shortcake recipe? It is delish!