I love strawberries. Sweet. Tart. Pretty. Red. Come on, everyone likes strawberries, right? I've been on a jelly/canning/preserving kick over the past year and I thought, what could I do with strawberries? These Texas grown berries are delicious. They're pretty BIG too. I took a basic recipe from Susan Can Cook and modified it a bit. It came out really nicely. Delicious and tastes like "Summer". Try this. It's easy and delicious.
Strawberry Lemon Ginger Jam
4 lbs. Strawberries
2 1/2 lbs. Sugar
7 oz. Lemon Juice
1/2 cup Candied Ginger
1/4 Teaspoon Salt
2 Tablespoons Lemon Zest
This takes two sessions. Here is what we do:
Wash and dry the strawberries gently. Hull and quarter them placing them in a non-reactive bowl (I use a really large 18 quart stainless bowl because it makes it easy to mix).
Add the zest to the quartered fruit and then, using a food mill (or food processor) crush a quarter of the berries. Return it all together to the big bowl.
Add the sugar, ginger, salt and lemon juice and combine. Cover and refrigerate overnight. When ready to start the next day, let it sit out for at least an hour before starting the heat.
Cook over a medium high heat, stirring to make sure that the sugar doesn't "catch" and burn. There is no pectin required for this method so long as you can cook to the required 220 degrees fahrenheit. This takes a bit of time, it took me almost an hour and a half. It greatly reduces the volume and starts to become jelly-like and almost translucent.
I use the frozen spoon method to double check that the jam will "set". Once ready, sit the pan off the heat, skim off any excess foam and let it cool for about 5 minutes. Stir to distribute the fruit evenly throughout the mixture. Ladle into hot sterilized jars and refrigerate or hot water process for 15 minutes.