Wednesday, June 22, 2011

~Strawberry Season~

It's June!  Our large freezer downstairs has been defrosted and is ready for this summer's bounty!  As of this afternoon the top shelf now has Quart Sized Ziploc Freezer bags each containing 2 cups of sliced Strawberries!

Earlier today a quick trip to Meadowbrook Farm in East Longmeadow resulted in the purchase of 1 large tray (8 quarts) + 2 additional quarts of these luscious berries.  Every year I purchase strawberries at Meadowbrook Farms and prep them for our freezer.  During the frigid winter months in MA, defrosted local delicious strawberries make a wonderful topping for nutritious light Oatmeal Pancakes or on Vanilla + Strawberry ice cream.  I'd never consider buying the tasteless strawberries that are sold in grocery stores when these berries are not in season here in New England. 

This is also a tradition of mine that started in my childhood.  However, then my family would drive out to the strawberry patch and harvest our supply.  The prepping was done after we returned home.  As time went on my DH & I did likewise.  Now, we purchase the fresh strawberries directly from Meadowbrook Farm. 

Strawberries are so easy to prep for freezing.  The tops of these luscious juicy red berries are cut off and then the berries are cleaned:  Double rinse in cold water and drain.  Over the years I've learned that slicing them in half or thirds before freezing results in wonderful shapes when served on ice cream or on pancakes.  

The 2 extra overfilled quarts purchased today are sitting on the bottom shelf of my fridge.  Tomorrow morning 2 batches of Strawberry Freezer Jam will be on my agenda.  The Certo, sugar and lemon juice are ready to go, including the 1 Cup sized Ziploc Containers!  After preparing the Freezer Jam, the containers of jam will sit undisturbed for 24 hours before placing in the freezer.  Whenever jam is needed it's defrosted in the fridge.  You just cannot beat the taste!  :) 

When making Freezer Jam - remember to make 1 batch at a time.  The directions are located inside the Certo box.  Follow the directions exactly.

Do you enjoy storing local produce for future use?  Do you prepare jam or Freezer Jam?



Cathy at Wives with Knives said...

We are in the middle of strawberry season here and the berries are fantastic. Strawberries are so easy to freeze and are a real treat in the middle of winter.

Carol @ There's Always Thyme to Cook said...

Gorgeous berries! I need another freezer for all the delicious summer treats I want to save for over the winter :)

Pam said...

Way to go, Judy! My mom was a strawberry addict and we had strawberries constantly when in season and then frozen too. A wonderful wintertime treat! I need to clean out the freezer now!

JG said...

Cathy- Local Strawberries are definitely a treat!

Carol- The freezer comes in so handy. :)

Pam- Sounds like my household - past & present!


Rita said...

These are mouth watering! We still a while before they are ready in this area. I usually make confiture(no Certo) tempted to try your method this year.

Mary Bergfeld said...

You'll be finishing with the strawberries just in time to work on blue and blackberries :-) You have a busy few weeks ahead of you. I also freeze berries so I know where you are coming from. I hope you have a great day.Blessings...Mary