Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Spreading Jam: Strawberry Rhubarb Jam

June gloom is slowly lifting and the sun is starting to show its face again. The mornings are still cool enough to sit outside and enjoy breakfast. This morning I am going to serve you a hot cup of tea and a baguette with fresh strawberry rhubarb jam. Grab a big cup. so you can relax and enjoy the morning.

The strawberries were picked yesterday. As a child this was one of my favorite activites, getting up early on a summer morning and visiting the strawberry fields to pick berries. Oftentimes I thought they should have weighed us instead of our baskets as we would pop so many of the berries into our mouths.

If you are not fond of strawberry rhubarb jam, choose another fruit from the baskets. This is the perfect time of the year for making jam. The markets have a potpourri of fruit, all beckoning to be chosen.

Afterwards hop on your bicycle.Let's see where your legs will take you.

When is the last time you rode the merry-go-round?

Maybe you want to bring along a book, or a friend and find a quiet spot to enjoy the day.

Enjoy the days, these days that we remember do not come along often.

RECIPE FOR STRAWBERRY RHUBARB JAM (adapted from Christine Ferber, Mes Confitures)

2 3/4 pounds rhubarb
2 1/2 pounds strawberries
3 3/4 cups granulated sugar plus 3/4 cups sugar ( I eliminated 1 1/2 cups sugar)
juice of 2 small lemons

Rinse the strawberries under cold water. Let them macerate with 3 cups sugar and juice of 1 lemon overnight in a ceramic bowl covered with a piece of parchment paper.

Next day, pour this preparation into a sieve. Pour the juice into a preserving pan, bring it to a boil and cook for 5 minutes. Pour the cooked juice onto the strawberries, cover with a piece of parchment paper and allow to macerate again overnight.

The third day, bring this mixuture to a boil 5 times. Do this sequence again four times at 8 hour intervals. Add the cooked strawberries. ( I pureed the berries) Return to a boil, stirring gently. Skim carefully.

Meanwhile prepare a jam with the rhubarb, 3 cups sugar (she uses 3 3/4 cups) and the juice of 1 lemon. Rinse the rhubarb in cold water cut the stems in two, lenghtwise and then in samall dice. Macerated the rhubarb, sugar, and lemon juice overnight in a ceramic bowl covered with a piece of parchment paper.

Next day, pour this preparation into a sieve. Bring the collected juice to a boil in a preserving pan. Skim and continue cooking on high heat. The syrup will be suffieciently concentrated. Add the diced rhubarb. Return to a boil, mixing gently.

The rhubarb jam should be started at the same time as the strawberry preparation because the rhubarb needs to sit overnight and the two batches of jam need to be finished at the same time.

When the two batches of jam hae been skimmed , mix them in one pan. Boil for 3 minutes. I like my jam thick so I did not add all the juice. I played with it and saved the remainder of the juice to add to a cake or other dessert. You will know the jam is ready, by putting it on a plate and seeing the consistency. Put the jam into jars and seal


Holly said...

It sounds like a lovely day. I made strawberry jam last month. My mom brought me some strawberries from California. We used them on homemade sour cream pound cake and then I made jam from the rest. So yummy. I've never tried strawberry/rhubarb though. Sounds delicious.

gfe--gluten free easily said...

Esme--Everyone is talking about strawberries ... picking them, making jam ... I'm still waiting on learning to eat strawberries, but they are lovely and I enjoy them in daiquiris. ;-) Glad you had such a great time with your picking and making of jam.

I was last on a merry-go-round at the National Mall. It was last summer for a girlfriends' day trip to the National Gallery, Smithsonian, etc. We were all laughing saying we didn't remember the horses going that fast ... and it was true. LOL

Love the boat photo. What are the white things on the bank by the boat? At first they looked like bee hives, even though that didn't make sense. LOL We raise bees so I'm always on the lookout for white rectangles out in green space. ;-) Now I'm thinking they might be barrels or seats ...


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