Earlier this week we picked about 10 lbs of strawberries and 20 lbs of cherries from local u-pick farms. What did we do with all of it? We ate quite a bit of it fresh because it was just so delicious but I did manage to preserve some of it for the coming winter. I frozen a tray of strawberries for smoothies and made Traditional Strawberry Vanilla Jam, a favourite around here!
The cherries were a bit more work. My children insisted on making cherry pie so I let them pit the cherries while I prepared the crust. The pie turned out delicious by the lack of quality control in the pitting department meant we had the eat the pie very carefully, essentially massaging the cherries in our mouths to find hidden pits. Last year I froze most of our cherries and we’ve been using them in smoothies throughout the year. Because we still have some frozen cherries from last year I chose to canned some of this year’s cherries instead. I put up seven quarts of whole pitted cherries in very light syrup. If we come across more cherries I will probably freeze and dehydrate some as well. I’m finding that it’s nice to preserve produce in a variety of ways, when possible, because each method of preservation (canning, freezing, dehydrating, fermenting) is better suited for different uses.