Thursday, July 11, 2013

Strawberry Season

It's strawberry season around these parts and I was determined to get out picking this year. I never got around to it last year and that was one thing I really regret.

So last week I headed out to The Berry Patch, armed with my baskets and a coat. To think that we even needed a coat last week is crazy, it's so hot this week! I spent about 15 minutes in the field and came home with two 4 litre baskets.

I felt pretty good about myself and Dan was pretty excited to be eating fresh berries that evening. Nothing tastes quite as good as a freshly picked strawberry.

But we all know that two baskets isn't enough at all. So Dan and I headed back out to the field the next day, ready to come home with at least twice as much as I had picked.

Instead, we tripled my previous yield and came home with 6 baskets full!

Can we say strawberry overload? Although I'm pretty sure the only reason why I felt overloaded with strawberries is because I got super dizzy that night and couldn't finish dealing with them. And we all know that strawberries can't be left to sit in baskets in this warm weather for long. But don't worry, I got them all put into their proper places before long.

We froze the majority of the berries, by flash freezing them on cookie sheets and then pouring them into old ice cream containers.

We added some to some stewed rhubarb and kept a bunch fresh in the fridge to snack on over the next week.

I also made strawberry jam. Now, I don't actually want to tell you about my jam making adventure this year but in order to keep it real on here and show that I too am human and make mistakes and the occasional flops, I will share. Flops like this jam.

I've made jam before and it turned out just fine so I'm not sure what happened this year. Maybe our batch was too big or we didn't add enough sugar or I boiled it too long, but whatever the cause, it didn't thicken.

It's really runny and almost like a strawberry sauce. So while it tastes good, I can't really call it jam. I even tried to redo a couple jars in an attempt to fix it but it just didn't work. So for the next year, we'll be eating runny strawberry jam. All 12 jars of it.

Oh well. Nothing I can do about it now. Dan says he doesn't mind so we'll just make do and hopefully next year's jam will work better. Because yes, I do plan on trying it again and hopefully improving. It's a learning experience right? It can't go well all the time.

Anyone else go strawberry picking this year? Did you eat all the berries or did you make jam or other preserves like me? What's your favourite strawberry dessert?


  1. one of my batches of jam turned out like that too...5 jars. The other two batches I made turned out fine. We will be using the runny ones as ice cream topping.

  2. I feel like strawberry sauce would be good on ice cream or pancakes :)

  3. Megan - While I'm glad to know I'm not the only one who had some flopped jam this year, I'm sorry to hear about your saucy jars. Although I'm jealous that your other batches worked. Maybe I'll have better luck next year...

    Casey - Strawberry sauce is good on ice cream or pancakes. Except for we have 12 jars of "strawberry sauce" and 0 jars of jam. Plus, I can't eat ice cream. :(

  4. Try whisking it together with some olive oil and vinegar to make a strawberry vinaigrette or using it as the base for a glaze for all sorts of meats. I know a girl who claims to use it to flavor lemonade, but I think that would depend on the thickness of your particular strawberry syrup. And if all else fails - you've got loads of stocking stuffers ready to go for Christmas.

    I found your blog through a link on Down to Earth. I'm enjoying reading it!

  5. Jill - That's a really good idea about making a vinaigrette or meat glaze! I wouldn't have thought of that. I will definitely have to give it a shot, since I have so much of the sauce.

    I'm so glad that you found my blog through Down to Earth, I always like to know where people heard about me. :)

  6. Feel free to bring me some strawberries!! ;)

  7. Maddie - I would love to bring you some strawberries! But I think they would go bad by the time I got there... :P