Sweet and fragrant, a strawberry in syrup nourishes the soul as well as body. Ideal for relaxed weekend mornings when the family wanders in for breakfast, just serve over crispy waffles or fluffy pancakes with rich cream and your favorite coffee.
This recipe is different from your every day strawberry jam. Here the crystallized strawberries have stayed whole, you can see their pretty shapes in the syrup, and you can bite into each one, sending shockwaves of strawberry flavor mixed with cardamom and aromatic rose water to your jubilating palate.
Special gift for the very special friend.
Note: The jarring method (boiling the jars then closing them tightly and letting them cool upside down) is one that's been commonly practiced in Russia and France for generations and generations. I use this method all the time for my jams and preserves.
Makes: 2 jars
- 2 lb. fresh strawberries (preferably organic)
- 3/4 lb. sugar
- lemon juice from 1 lemon
- 5-6 cardamom pods, crushed
- 1 tsp. rose water
Rinse the strawberries quickly under cold water. Dry with a kitchen towel, and cut off their stems. Do not cut strawberries in halves, leave them whole.
Put the strawberries together with the sugar and the lemon juice in a porcelain/glass deep bowl. Cover with a sheet of parchment paper, and let macerate for about 3-4 hours or overnight.
The next day, put the strawberry mixture in a large saucepan (copper pan or stainless steel pan), and bring just to a simmer. Add the cardamom seeds. Simmer for about 3 minutes. Take off from the heat. Cover with parchment paper, and let rest for few hours. You need to repeat this process 2 more times. At the end add the rose water and take the strawberries off the heat.
Pour the strawberries with syrup into the sterilized jars until they are full, wipe carefully if there was any spillage and close the lids tightly. Let cool to room temperature upside-down on the counter, then store in a cool and dark place for a few months.