Berry season is upon us in Manitoba and let me say – the berries this year are cray-zay! All this heat and rain has made them so big and juicy, the sore back from bending down for so long is worth it! I haven’t been berry picking in quite awhile but I have a bit more time on my hands these days so I decided to take advantage. I went to Prairie Berry, a new strawberry farm that’s 10 minutes south of Winnipeg down Highway 75 (Pembina) It was great! Tons of sweet berries just waiting to be picked and at only $10/bucket for u-pick, you really can’t go wrong.
I decided I was going to try making jam as well as some strawberry fruit snacks that I saw on Pinterest, along with saving some to eat fresh. I haven’t gotten to the fruit snacks yet so this week, I’ll share the jam recipe that I used!
There’s a couple things I really love about this recipe. First of all, it’s so easy. There’s only 4 ingredients: strawberries, lemon juice, corn starch, and sugar. If you’ve made jam before, I know what you’re thinking: Umm.. where’s the pectin? Well, this recipe uses corn starch to thicken it which makes for a jam that is less “jelly” than store bought jam. It still thickened up really nicely but I think this gives it some versatility to be used on things other than bread. Being the ice cream fanatic that I am, I instantly thought it could be used as a topping on vanilla ice cream or perhaps on pancakes. The other thing I liked was that this recipe calls for waaay less sugar than most jam recipes I found – 1 1/2 cups as opposed to the 6-7 most others called for. You really get the strawberry taste instead of an overwhelming amount of sugar.
OK so here’s the recipe!
Yield: 2 – 16 ounce jars (I put mine in 125 ml jars and it made 8 plus a bit)
5 cups strawberries, fresh or thawed from frozen
5 tbsp. lemon juice
1 tbsp corn starch
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
Add the strawberries to a large pot and mash. You could use a potato masher, fork — anything to mash up the fruit and release the juices.
Pour the lemon juice into a small bowl and add the cornstarch. Stir until the cornstarch has dissolved. Pour the mixture into the pot with the strawberries.
Add the sugar and stir all ingredients together.
Turn the stove top to medium-high and bring mixture to a ROLLING boil (as in, the bubbles don’t stop when you stir them). Allow the jam to boil for 20-25 minutes, stirring often. Mixture should thickly coat the back of a spoon.
Remove from heat and allow to cool before dividing the jam into jars. Store in the refrigerator.
That’s it! Easy-peasy! Try it out and let me know what you think! I should mention that this is NOT my recipe, I have a Pinterest addiction and you can read the full write-up here, which is where I found it.
If you’re heading out to Birds Hill for Folk Fest this weekend, or if you’re not but still want something to do, make sure you pop by the Pineridge Hollow Farmers Market on Saturday morning from 9-1! I’ll be there with my products including $5.00 Quick Fix sticks for instant relief of mosquito bites. With all this rain, I have a feeling you’ll be needing one!
Have a great week and be sure to get outside and enjoy this beautiful weather! It seems to fly by so we have to make the most of it!
Love, Ash XO