my tongue is burning… in a good way
I’m in LA. We still have locally grown strawberries. Alas, we won’t have them for long.
Every trip to the farmers’ market since Kaela announced what we were canning with this month, I kept trying to stay away from the berries. I have bell peppers that won’t get jellied and lots of hot peppers that will probably have to go it alone in a jar of vinegar. For some reason though, the strawberries kept begging for the fire.
Habanero Berry Bliss
2 cups hulled and halved strawberries
2 cups of sugar
½ Habanero pepper, minced (I kept the one seed)
1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons lemon juice
makes 1 pint/.5L
clean and sterilize your jar, lid and band.
add minced pepper, lemon juice and vinegar to non-reactive pot. heat on low for a minute or two. add strawberries and sugar. turn heat up to medium-high. stir until all sugar has dissolved. turn heat down to a low-medium flame and leave it be. only stir to make sure all the sugar is incorporated and has dissolved. let it cook for about 30 minutes. don’t touch it. just watch it. oh, and skim off all that foam. when the cooking time has finished, take your pot off the flame. pack your jar, remove any air bubbles and wipe the rim of the jar with a damp cloth. process for 10 minutes in your hot water bath canner. remove your jar from the canner and place it on a dishtowel to cool off and rest. I usually leave it overnight cause, well, I cook at night.
The NikkiBits: Um, proud of myself. While Bryant and Eugenia gave me ideas, it really was the 2006 ed of the Joy of Cooking that made me feel comfy making it happen on my own. It’s chock full of info for those of use who’ve strapped on the canning recipe training wheels. I love being able to quickly find out what is full or bereft of pectin or acid. It’s also great to be able to work out how much sugar or added lemon juice I need for my tinybatches instead of doing the math. Seriously, quartering a recipe isn’t cute.
Now about that heat. This is perfect for me. It’s not outrageous, but I FEEL it. I tend to squirt sriracha on my hand and lick it off, just cause. So, maybe, if you’re going to do a tinybatch and you’re not sure about how much heat you can handle, you might want to use a quarter of the pepper.
What’sNext: More. More. More! I just had some of the left over syrup on pancakes. My tongue isn’t on fire, but it’s def HEATED in that sexy way. I feel like this could be a good drink syrup as well. I used to get strawberry balsamic martinis at Sheebeen in NYC. The best part was that the balsamic was the kicker. I don’t really get that from strawberry balsamic jam. It’s just mellow. This, though, the habanero is the tingly kicker. Makes me feel alive.
And, now, I want ice cream. I want to spoon my Habanero Berry Bliss over ice cream.
Kaela & Tigress, THANK YOU!