Friday, June 28, 2013


What a busy time the end of June is!  Lots of garden projects, endless weeding, first herb harvests, and the start of berry season.  June is strawberry season around here; then come currants, mulberries, cherries, raspberries, blueberries all through the later summer months!  We had the first ripe strawberries from our own garden and then knew it was time for the annual early morning berry picking trip to one of our favourite local organic farms where you can pick your own: Organic Oasis.

Then on Saturday we held a sugar-free jam making (no refined sugar) workshop here at Little City Farm and made up a batch of delicious strawberry-honey jam (made with honey and apple cider as sweetener) that looks and tastes as close to fresh berries as you can get with a jam.  Regular sugar jams contain a ratio of 7 cups sugar to 5 cups fruit, and in the end all you taste is the sugar that has overpowered the true fruit and berry flavours.  You really can make perfect jams without refined sugar, using honey, agave, maple syrup, pure fruit juices, stevia or even xylitol.  The texture and colour is slightly different, but using a low sugar pectin like Pumona's the consistency and flavour is just right.  What a treat for winter that will be.  Now it's time for fresh eating, strawberry smoothies, making berry fruit leather, a strawberry pie or two, and of course putting them up in the freezer for the cold months.

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