Strawberry season is here in Connecticut! If you haven’t already grabbed a delicious boxed of the chocolate-covered variety from local chocolatier Munson’s Chocolates, then head a local berry farm and pick-your-own harvest!
This week, to celebrate our anniversary, we took the boys out to breakfast (oh yes, anniversary celebrations as a family!), and then headed to Pesce Farm in Bolton, Connecticut for some berrying!
I love the way Pesce assigned us our own row, with a cone that marked where the last person had stopped picking. It helped us pick lots of huge, ripe berries quickly and kept the rows from getting over-picked.
Our oldest son had fun running up and down the row (again, because nobody else was in our row, that meant he could wander a bit without disturbing other pickers). Our little on stayed closer and helped us pick and eat berries.
And what do you do with fourteen pounds of fresh strawberries? Make jam, of course!
Raw Strawberry Jam – a no cook recipe!
I wanted to make a jam as unprocessed as possible, so I opted for a no cook recipe.
- 1 lb fresh strawberries, rinsed, hulled
- 2 T chia seeds (this provides the "glue)
- 2 T fresh lemon juice
- 1 t fresh lemon zest
- 2 T maple syrup
- Rinse, hull and mash strawberries.
- In bowl, combine chia seeds with lemon juice and stir. Add mashed strawberries and stir. Add maple syrup and, you guessed it, stir!
- Taste and add more syrup if not sweet enough.
- Ladle into jars and store in the refrigerator (2-3 weeks) or freezer (2-3 months).
This recipe was so simple and easy, I almost didn’t believe it! The chia seeds create the “gel” factor you want from fruit jam, without gelatin or cooking and processing. It’s not quite as firm as a gelatin or pectin recipe, but it’s perfect for slathering on scones or scooping over vanilla ice cream.
If you wanted to be sure the jam would last longer you could water bath process, but then you wouldn’t have a “raw” jam.
Enjoy! Strawberry season only lasts a few weeks, so get that “summer in a jar” bottled up as quickly as possible!