Thursday, August 18, 2011

Fresh Summer berries!

We love to pick berries!  As soon as school is out we are picking strawberries, although with all the rain in BC this "Summer" we didn't get as many as I would have liked!  Then its onto raspberries and blueberries!  I like to just flash freeze all of our berries the same day as we pick organic untreated berries so they need to be processed the same day.  Flash freezing if you don't know if just laying all of the berries with all stems removed on a cookie sheet in one layer and freezing for about 30 mins until partly frozen and then I dump them into a large Ziploc bag, this was they don't all stick together.

Because its usually so hot in the Summer I tend to make all of my jams in September or October when its a bit cooler out and just thaw out the berries and have a jam day or two!  This year my Sister in Law and Mother in Law went up to Kelowna for two weeks and brought back 20 lbs each of cherries and peaches!  I would have loved to can up some peaches but with all of us on the property and all of our families they all got eaten up!  I did however get to can about 15 lbs of cherries!  I was going to make cherry pie filling to make pies and for cheesecake toppings for the rest of the year but you need something called clear gel to make it so I couldn't and was bummed!

I decided to just do good old cherry jam!  I don't own a cherry pitter because I haven't actually made anything with cherries before, we usually just eat them all up.  Of course instead of getting one I just figured it wouldn't be that bad and pitted them by hand.  Holy man that was so much work!  Trust me when I tell you to invest the $10 and buy one!!  My fingers were dark purple for about 3 or 4 full days.  It was crazy but the jam is sooooooo good it was worth it!  I have shared it all over the property and everyone said that they loved it!  A lot of sugar went into it but at least I know what else went into our jam!

I am pretty bummed that I didn't think to take any pictures while I was making it so you are just going to have to use your imagination :)

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