The older I get, the more I look to add traditions to my life. The holidays bring back a lot of great memories as a kid for me and I hope to remember these current days thirty years from now. My favorite memory is decorating the house for Christmas. My mom would put the Brenda Lee Christmas record on, serve us hot cocoa in Santa mugs and we’d bop around the living room spreading Christmas cheer. She’d let us decorate however we wanted- I’m sure she moved things around after we went to bed but I just remember feeling happy that I could help. I now have that Brenda Lee Christmas album and you better believe I’m going BLAST that thing at least once a day.
Unlike most New Yorkers these days, I like the snow. I don’t like driving in it but I like it being outside my window. Not only is it gorgeous, but I have a lot of great memories spending hours in the snow. And hiking in it. To celebrate this excitement of the approaching holidays and embracing the change of the seasons, I decided to add a new tradition: enjoy a jar of summer jam after the first snowfall.
I probably should have shared this recipe a few months ago when I made the jam and the strawberries were in season, but time passed and I forgot. Sorry about that.
Strawberry Thyme Jam recipe from the kitchn
1 quart strawberries (approximately 3 cups chopped)- we picked ours at Engelke Farm
1 cup local honey
5 to 6 sprigs thyme- picked from our back porch garden
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Chop berries and place them in a bowl. Add honey and stir. Strip thyme leaves off branches and add them to the strawberries and honey. Stir to combine.
When honey has dissolved and the strawberries are quite juicy, scrape the mixture into your pan.
Bring to a bubble and cook over high heat for 8 to 12 minutes, until the jam is thick and sticky.
Funnel jam into two prepared half pint jars and process in a small water bath canner for 10 minutes.
When time is up, remove jars from canner and let it cool on a folded kitchen towel. When it’s cool enough to handle, remove the ring and check seal. An unsealed jar should be refrigerated and eaten promptly. A sealed jar can be stored in a cool, dark place for up to one year.
The beau and I joke that we better survive after eating this jar of jam, because I’ve never canned anything before and it could be rancid. Hopefully we’ll be able to easily tell if it’s gone bad but we haven’t checked; it’s tucked up into a cupboard waiting to be paired with a baguette. And maybe a bottle of wine. But definitely a baguette.
Do you have any traditions that you are looking to carry on or start this season?