Our garden has produced an abundance of strawberries this year. The plants are just about finished producing and I have bags in the freezer and have also made one batch of Strawberry Fig Jam. I decided to make some strawberry syrup with the remaining berries. This syrup is perfect drizzled over plain yogurt or served with pound cake, a little bit of summertime to enjoy in the winter.
Whole Strawberries in Vanilla Syrup
1 ½ pounds of strawberries
3 ½ cups sugar
1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
Wash the strawberries and remove the stems and leaves.
Place the berries in a medium bowl and cover with the sugar. Add the vanilla bean seeds and the bean and stir gently to combine. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for 2-3 hours.
When the time is up pour the strawberries, vanilla bean juices and any remaining sugar into a shallow, wide pan. Add the lemon juice and slowly bring to a boil. Cook the strawberries at a boil for 10-12 minutes, until they go a bit translucent and the syrup is thick.
Pour the berries and syrup into a shallow bowl, cool and refrigerate, uncovered for a day.
When you are ready to can follow the directions to prepare your water bath canner and jars for processing. Scape the strawberry mixture into a medium pan and heat just to a simmer.
Ladle the berries into the jars and cover with the syrup. Leave 1/2 inch headspace.
Wipe the rims; apply the lids and rings and process in your boiling water bath canner for 10 minutes. Remove the jars, let cool and store in your pantry.
I still have strawberries coming in from my garden.
As much as I enjoy strawberry jam I only want to have so many jars in the pantry for consumption and gifts!
We’ve been enjoying the strawberries for dessert and for breakfast and I still have some left. What to do? I decided to freeze a few bags. How wonderful it is to enjoy the fresh taste of strawberries in the middle of winter. One of my mother’s famous desserts is a homemade pound cake with strawberries!
Berries are so easy to freeze. Wash, core, and slice, cut in half or freeze whole.
Sweeten to taste with honey or a little sugar. To freeze sweetened strawberries first slice the berries into a bowl, then toss gently with honey syrup or sugar and pack into your freezer container or bag.
To freeze whole strawberries, simply place them on a baking sheet and freeze until hard. This was the method I decided to use.
Then transfer the berries to freezer bags.
Once my strawberries were frozen solid I used my food sealer to keep them as fresh as possible.
If I didn’t have 12 meat birds coming in a few weeks to fill my freezer I think I would freeze more strawberries!
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Every year our fields are full of wild strawberries.
They are tiny but full of flavor.
However it takes a lot of time to pick a cup or two, which is generally what you need to make muffins. Our pug, Purtie, used to spend hours grazing eating every little strawberry she could find.
We sure miss her but we are able to find a lot more strawberries this year. My husband was sweet enough to spend some time and picked me a full cup of strawberries.
In exchange I made him a batch of his favorite muffins. I’m sure they would be wonderful with blueberries or regular strawberries but we just love them made with the wild strawberries.
Wild Strawberry Spice Muffins
1 ¾ cup flour
½ cup sugar
2 ½ tsp baking powder
¾ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp ground nutmeg
1 egg, lightly beaten
¾ cup milk
1/3 cup butter
1 cup wild strawberries
1 Tbsp sugar
¼ tsp cinnamon
In a bowl, combine all the dry ingredients. Combine the egg and milk. Add the egg mixture and butter to the dry ingredients; stir just until moistened. Fold in the strawberries.
Fill greased or paper lined muffin cups two-thirds full.
Combine the topping ingredients and sprinkle over the batter. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes. Cool for five minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack. Makes 1 dozen.
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