We are currently in the season of strawberries, if you are at the greengrocer or fruit and veg section of the supermarket, your senses will be assaulted by the smell of strawberries. Or they should be, but the fruit is kept so cold and picked so early sometimes that the fragrance is reduced – but that is another story.
Here in Scotland we grow amazing strawberries, in fact when I was down south recently, most, if not all the strawberries were Scottish, which made me happy.
Please ignore the signs that say less than half price of course they are and should be! They are currently in season and not imported from far-flung countries, still unripe and tasting like water. I even have some growing in my garden, which are truly delicious, even though my garden is overgrown and engulfed in weeds.
Anyway, what to do with them when you have a glut and they wont be eaten before they spoil, well I do two things; the first is to make jam, the second is to freeze them whole.
Strawberry Jam tastes delicious and is the only jam worth eating, in my humble opinion.
- I use 800 g mashed strawberries, 1 kg jam sugar and the juice from one lemon.
- Mash and mix in a heavy bottom saucepan heat without boiling until the sugar is melted, then boil vigorously for about 15 minutes. Then in the last five minutes, check the setting by putting a small amount onto a frozen plate to see if it set.
- I usually just put the jam into a plastic container in the fridge if it is just for us. I tend to only sterilise and set in jars if I am making it for other people.
So what to do with whole frozen strawberries? Use them as ice cubes. The boys love them in their juice and water. Particularly in the hot weather we have been having.
I like them in my fizzy water as the strawberry-ness infuses with the water, and tastes far better than the flavoured water you can purchase, as well as chilling it without diluting. Not so important when they are in fizzy water, very important when they are in a refreshing gin and tonic