Strawberry Jam

Strawberry picking is currently out of season. However, strawberries are still on sale in the farm markets till stock lasts. While exploring the farm market, I picked up a box of strawberries thinking I could use them in preparing the filling for macarons or some flavored buttercream or whipped frosting.

I decided to prepare strawberry jam from these and so explored a lot many recipes. Most used an artificial agent pectin to turn the fruit mash into a jelly based item. However I wanted to avoid it. Instead, increased the cooking time so that the jam sets.



Recipe :

Ingredients :

  • 1 lb(454 gms) strawberries
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1-2 tbsp lemon juice

Method :

  1. Discard the spoilt or about to get spoilt strawberries.Wash rest of the strawberries thoroughly. Cut the stem and leaves. Chop the selected strawberries into pieces.IMG_20160809_111426
  2. Put them in a blender and make into puree.IMG_20160809_111935
  3. In a non-stick saucepan, mix the strawberry puree, sugar and lemon juice.IMG_20160809_112632
  4. Heat on medium flame till boiling hot. Keep stiring continuously.IMG_20160809_114714
  5. Cook till the mixture thickens and starts leaving the sides. To check if the jam has reached the right consistency, take a bowl of water and put a drop of jam in it. If the jam settles at the bottom of the bowl and stays as a drop, it means the jam has begin to set.
  6. Put off the flame and pour the jam in a glass jar which had been sterlized well (the bottle and the lid).
  7. Enjoy the jam with bread or crackers.




Guacamole – Avocado dip

We had been to Johnson’s farm one Saturday for veggie and fruit picking. After enjoying the hay ride and picking, we visited the farm market to check out the fresh produce and bakery.

There they were selling some chips for which few samples were available along with avocado dip and peach salsa sauce. We had picked peaches, so I might plan trying out the peach salsa sauce in future. However, my hubby had a longtime carving for Guacamole – Avocado dip. We came to know that Avocado is good to reduce cholesterol. So I planned to try out Guacamole.


Recipe :

Ingredients :

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 1 medium onion or 1/2 cup onion, finely chopped
  • 1 medium tomato or 1/2 cup tomato, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic pod, minced
  • 2 green chillies, finely chopped
  • few sprigs of coriander leaves, finely chopped
  • 2 tbspn lime juice
  • salt and pepper as per taste

Method :

  1. Cut the avocado and remove the skin and retain the flesh.
  2. Take a potato masher and mash the avocado flesh.
  3. To this add all the other ingredients except the coriander leaves and mix well.
  4. Check the taste and garnish with coriander leaves.
  5. Store in an airtight container or cover with cling wrap and serve with Nachos or other chips.


Schezwan Sauce

After I decided to prepare spring rolls for my guests, suddenly it striked me that I need a sauce too for my chinese appetizer. Schezwan sauce was the perfect choice. But this lead to a train of questions in my mind. “Should I buy it? Will it be utilized later? Can I make it at home? What all ingredients will it require? Will they be readily available at home?”

So I started my research of going through various recipes for the same. It could be easily done with ingredients readily available at home and could also be used in future chinese recipes. So I finalized that I will make it at home.



Ingredients :

  • 1/4 cup garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 inch ginger, finely chopped
  • Around 20 Kashmiri red chillies
  • 1/4 tsp soya sauce
  • salt to taste
  • 1/2 tsp pepper powder
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 2 tsp red chilli sauce
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp vinegerIMG_20160715_100454-COLLAGE

Method :

  1. De-seed the red chillies and soak them in warm water for around 30-60mins.IMG_20160715_092405
  2. Drain the water and grind the chillies in a mixie into a fine paste.IMG_20160715_104925
  3. Heat oil in a non-stick wok. To it add garlic and ginger. Saute them well till garlic turns a little brown and looses its rawness.IMG_20160715_105444
  4. Then add the chilli paste and saute well till the oil separates and rawness of the chillies is lost.IMG_20160715_105824
  5. Add salt, pepper powder, soya sauce and red chilli sauce. Check the taste.
  6. Add some water, sugar and vinegar and cook till you get sauce consistency.
  7. Schezwan sauce is ready.