Monday, 28 June 2010

Milkshake, chocolate and jam

We're nearly done with the back garden cherry glut.  There are just a few left on the tree now - so dark that they are almost black; teasingly dripping sugary juice directly into the hens' run on the ground below.  The children and I went to our favourite PYO very early on Saturday morning and picked six baskets of strawberries and bought a couple of big boxes of gooseberries as well - creating our very own strawberry and gooseberry glut instead.

Everyone had their own ideas of what do do with all this fruit.  Cam made endless strawberry milkshakes all weekend - about ten big, juicy strawberries, a large dollop of vanilla ice cream and half a pint of milk, all blitzed up in my blender and then gulped down, while lying prone on the sofa watching the tennis. 

Livvy wanted to make strawberries dipped in chocolate.

She's now tall enough to be able to stand at the stove to cook, so I showed her how to melt the chocolate over a pan of water, and then dip the strawberries in the chocolate and gently lay them down on the greasproof paper.  She loves the fact that she is now tall enough to cook by herself, and wants to do it all the time.

And I knew that most of the rest of the strawberries would end up as jam.  I made the jam yesterday afternoon - as the temperatures climbed relentlessly upwards. I was tired, hot, headachey and sticky by the end of the evening.  As I cleaned up the kitchen and all the jam making kit, I never wanted to see another strawberry again.

But when I saw all the pots of jam (all eighteen of them!) gleaming in the sunshine this morning I was delighted.

Livvy's right.  Strawberry jam rocks.


  1. 18 jars of jam, an accomplishment indeed!

    I made raspberry/apricot jam last night, but only had enough for 3 jars after all the nibblers in the family had a go this weekend. Plus I still have not gotten brave enough to seal the jars, so I do tend to stick to short runs.

    What will you do with the gooseberries?

  2. Strawberry jam DOES rock, as does that label. I've never made it. I think I have to now - you've inspired me with your labour of love.

  3. That jam does look fab! Mmm!

    Sadly missing all the berries and cherries on the plot this year. Note to self not to plan holiday for this time next year!

    K x

  4. I made my first batch of strawberry jam last week, I really enjoyed doing it, in fact I'm annoyed I never tried before. It was certainly worth the effort and it definitely won't be the last time I make it. Didn't manage to make as much as you though, I only managed four jars.

  5. Strawberry jam does indeed rock. 18 jars is pretty impressive.

  6. blimey! 18 jars must be a record, surely?! now you're all set for a long cold winter...x

  7. well done on the jam front.We icecreamed some of ours too but might do some more jam as it's so summery in the winter if that makes sense

  8. Yum. How fun to have a pick your own so close. What is happening to the gooseberries?

  9. If you don't mind me asking, how does PYO fruit measure up price-wise? We're in a bit of a budget period at the moment, and I really fancy it, but I worry that the kids will put the entire week's food money into little baskets and then we'll be a bit screwed.


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