What a lovely summer it’s been. The UK is still in the middle of a heat wave and I am loving it. Meanwhile the running is proving a bit tricky in this weather, but I wouldn’t trade it. I was nearing the end of my lovely Jubilee strawberries and deciding what to do with them befitting their status. and I decided upon jam and vodka. Vodka recipe to follow, as it needs about a week to steep.
I used 2 punnets of strawberries in the jam and came out with 1 large jar of jam. My husband looked a bit crestfallen when it only made the one jar, but is quite happy, as am I, with the results.
I decided not to do much as the strawberries are lusciously sweet on their own, and I wanted merely to enhance their flavour.
For a touch more sweetness I used maple agave syrup.
I also added in the left over vanilla pod. I scrape the seeds out of the pods when I make my Vanilla bean and toasted hazelnut biscotti and then pop the pods into my sugar jar so that I have vanilla sugar to use in my baking. Into the strawberries went the pod along with the one of my favourite ingredients, chia seeds. Now, before you start thinking I have put vodka in, that is actually homemade vanilla that I have had steeping since October. I only used a touch as I had the vanilla pod.
The chia seeds also help thicken the jam and can be used with or instead of pectin, depending on the consistency you prefer. I used a tiny bit of pectin for it to set and to try it out but typically leave it out when I use chia seeds. The jam is easy to put together, and ready to pop in the jar within 20-30 minutes. Just wait for it to cool and pop in the fridge and you can eat it when it is chilled.
The result was a naturally sweet jam with a tough of sharpness, that I use both on toast and in my overnight oats in the morning. It’s also nice plain on a spoon just out of the jar. Not that I do that of course.
Just look at that rich colour. That is what you get with the Jubilee strawberries.
I love the light vanilla taste that really lends itself to the strawberries without taking over.