25 May 2011

Of bread and jam and butterflies

Most of my cooking of late has been of the sturdy, tested, workaday sort -- and mostly things I've written about already -- because it is May, and there are things to trim and deadhead, and grass to cut, and irises and roses, and those take most of my free time.

But last week there was a giant batch of strawberry jam that I feel ought to be commemorated, if only because it was a giant batch of jam. One of the farmers at the market was selling off most of his strawberries as 'seconds' because they'd been damaged by rain. A $10 bill bought me 15 pounds of bruised berries.

15 pounds

And so I made jam. There's not much to talk about as a recipe; hull the berries, slice the larger and quarter the smaller ones, add sugar and pectin (I used Sure-jell light pectin for low-sugar and no-sugar recipes, which can probably be found in any grocery store), cook, and put into jars.

A lot of jars. I think I got 24 half-pint jars, with another pint I just put into the refrigerator because I was tired of boiling jars, and also because certain very large Vikings are like very small boys, who love strawberries and strawberry jam but do not love waiting.

R.S. Ward

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