Strawberry Ginger Preserves

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Hi, my name is Marcella and I buy salvage groceries.   

My salvage grocery addiction began only a few short months ago.  It all started innocently enough.  I was driving home from my favorite taqueria on Midlothian Turnpike when I saw a sign for Fresh to Frozen Salvage Grocery.  Salvage Grocery?  My curiosity was peaked.  With a quick Google search I learned that a salvage market is one that sells food with damaged packaging or that is very close to its best-by date.  Although I am not cheap when it comes to food, I do get a THRILL from getting a deal. 

At Fresh to Frozen the prices on produce are unbeatable.  Here are some of my most recent scores: green beans ($0.11 per pound), cherry tomatoes ($0.25 per pint), 10 pound bag of potatoes ($1.50), and strawberries ($0.88 per pint).  As you might image, the only caveat is you need to eat the food as soon as possible.    

Last week I bought two pints of strawberries for $1.76.  Although these strawberries were slightly overripe and bruised, I could see their potential.   It took me a couple days to come up with a plan for these berries.  I was under the pressure of knowing that with every passing hour the delicate fruit was breaking down a little more.  Finally I realized the solution was obvious; how better to preserve something than…drumroll…strawberry preserves.  Below is a simple recipe that you can use if you ever have berries, of any type, that are on their way out.   

 

Strawberry Ginger Preserves

(Based on the recipe ‘Strawberry Conserves’ from Canal House Cooks Every Day)

     2 Pints Strawberries, washed, hulled, and cut into quarters

     2 Cups Granular Sugar

     Peel of 1 Lemon, including white pith

     ½ Peel of Lime, including white pith

     1 inch piece of Fresh Ginger (peeled and cut in half)

 

Lemon and lime peels contain all the pectin

Lemon and lime peels contain all the pectin

(FYI: The white pith of citrus fruit contains loads of pectin, which is a substance that makes preserves gel naturally)

Put the strawberries in a heavy bottom pot.  Fold in 1 ½ cups of the sugar, then bring to a boil over medium-high heat.  Reduce to a simmer.  Simmer for 8 minutes, then remove the pot from the heat.

Once off the heat, fold in the remaining ½ cup sugar.  Return the pot to the heat and bring to a boil. Boil for 2 minutes and then remove from the heat. Use a slotted spoon to lift the berries from the syrup and put them in a bowl. Return the pot with the syrup to the heat and add the lemon peel and ginger pieces to the pot.  Bring to a boil over medium-high again, and boil for 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and let the syrup settle.  Allow the syrup to cool for about 10 minutes, then return the berries to the syrup. Cover and set aside until set at room temperature for about 6 hours or overnight.  Remove the lemon peel and ginger pieces.  Pack the preserves in 16oz jar and refrigerate.   

 

Folded the sugar into the quartered berries

Folded the sugar into the quartered berries

Strawberries simmering in syrup

Strawberries simmering in syrup

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Strawberry Ginger Preserves with Ginger Zing Granola from Ellwood Thompson's and Fage 2% Greek Yogurt (plain)

Strawberry Ginger Preserves with Ginger Zing Granola from Ellwood Thompson's and Fage 2% Greek Yogurt (plain)