Thursday, June 6, 2013

Strawberry-Lavender Preserves

Gigantic strawberries were a dollar a pound.  I hated to cut them up for preserves, but they wouldn't fit into the jar otherwise.  To be different, I decided to add a floral note of lavender.  You don't know if it's a good idea until you make it!

Remember, jams can take a while.  This one, using the skillet method, involves a lot of sitting around and steeping.  If you didn't do that, the syrup part wouldn't be as flavorful as the preserves.  Since I always end up with a lot of leftover jelly, I want it to taste at least as good as the fruit.

1 lb strawberries, hulled and quartered
1 lb sugar
1 Tb dried culinary lavender
2 Tb lemon juice

1.  Combine sugar and lavender in a sealable container and let sit for a day to make lavender sugar.

2.  Pour the sugar over prepared strawberries in a bowl and let sit until the berry juice is drawn out and the whole thing is a gooey mess, about 8 hours.

3.  In a medium saucepan, bring mixture to a low boil and cook until the sugar is completely melted and the juices run clear, about 5 to 10 minutes.  Stir in lemon juice.  Refrigerate overnight.

4.  If canning, prepare jars.  Pour mixture into a 12" skillet with rounded sides and bring to a boil.  Skim off any impurities and cook until thermometer reaches 220º.  Pour into jars (or whatever).  If canning, process in hot water bath for 8 minutes, let cool, etc.  If just storing, allow to cool uncovered until no longer steaming, then refrigerate.

4a. To separate preserves from jelly, spoon just the strawberries into the first half-pint jar, with enough syrup to fill the spaces.  For the other jar, strain syrup through a fine-mesh sieve to remove the lavender blossoms as you fill it.  Cap and continue.
How you can tell it's canning day

L to R: Cherry pie filling, Strawberry-Lavender, Rhubarb-Orange

Makes about one cup of preserves, plus one cup of jelly

Difficulty rating  :)

No comments:

Post a Comment

I got tired of having to moderate all the spam comments and put back the verification. Sorry if it causes hassles.