Thursday, July 25, 2013

Easy Fresh Strawberry Jam

Although this week we're featuring picnic fare, I can't forget how this time of year is great for berry picking. With all the berries we picked, an obvious thing to do was to make jam. Lots of jam! Besides, it was something I could bring along to a picnic or incorporate in a dessert. With some of this Easy Fresh Strawberry Jam, I served it at our picnic over some creamy Brie cheese with rice crackers. Fresh, fruity and perfect for picnics...

I woke up my boys bright and early for a trip to the local strawberry farm. It seems the picking window this year wasn't very big so I knew we had to go right when the season opened up. We spent a good hour crouched in the rows of strawberries with our feet covered in mud and it was all worth it. We came home with a bounty of strawberries, some of which were made into this jam.

This technique can be used to make other fruit jams but I especially like it with strawberries. The berries we picked were especially sweet and juicy so we didn't have to use quite as much sugar... so when you give this a try, adjust the sugar accordingly to how sweet your berries are. One of my favorite ways to enjoy fresh strawberry jam is when paired with brie and served with crackers. That's exactly what we had for a recent picnic and it was light, fruity, fresh and easy to take along!

Easy Fresh Strawberry Jam
recipe from Cook's Illustrated

1 pound fresh strawberries, washed, hulled & sliced thin or chopped
1 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

In 10- or 12-inch skillet, bring fruit, sugar, and lemon juice to boil over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. 

Reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring constantly and skimming foam as necessary, until mixture begins to look syrupy and thickens slightly, about 7-10 minutes; remove from heat. 

Cool jam to room temperature before serving.

Spoon over a wedge of brie and serve with crackers.