Have I told you mum is a great cook? Perhaps not, but I am sure you can guess. I have always admired Lena’s energy, I can hardly remember her tired or complaining and I will never change her strawberry preserve for anything in the world.
Even after long hours at work mum will find time to make something a little bit more special. In our family that translates in dessert, we have a terrribly sweet tooth. So be it cake or improvised crumble, there will always be some homemade jam or spoon-sweet too. It’s essential for breakfast! We cannot imagine yoghurt or toast without it.
Now with summer in full swing there will always be ice-cream around too. We get a plain tub of vanilla or kaimaki, a Greek favourite flavour, extra creamy mastic flavoured ice-cream. Toppings are of course homemade, an array of syrups and nuts are always around the house. So here is a favourite, strawberry preserve, or spoon-sweet as we call it over here.
- 1 kg of strawberries
- 700 gr sugar
- 1 lemon for its juice
- 100 ml water
A few tips:
Use a large sauce pan as the boiling mixture with foam and froth. It smells delicious but it can make a huge sugary mess on your hob.
It’s best to do small quantities at a time, so you can control the process.
Wash your jars in warm soapy water, rinse and let them dry. Avoid drying with a fluffy towel as it might leave residue. Preheat your oven at 160 oC max (gas mark 3, 325 oF) and place the dry jars for 10 minutes.
What to do:
Remove the stems from the strawberries and rinse thoroughly.
Strain and place in a large pot, alternating a layer of strawberries with a layer of sugar.
Leave the strawberries and sugar overnight, or at least 3 hours. This will allow the strawberries to let out all their juices.
The next day, check the liquids, you might need to add a small amount to water in the pot, approximately 100 ml should be fine.
Bring to the boil and let it boil for 2 minutes. As soon as this happens, lower the heat to a slow simmer. The strawberries will start foaming, make sure to skim any foam.
Add the lemon juice and let it simmer for 15 minutes.
Transfer to the sterilised jars and store in the fridge.
with love from Athens