I knew it was possible that I would have to collect him, despite having arrangements in place.
So in lieu of being invited to (a) a friend's tupperware party and (b) champagne later with my neighbour, I collected my Mother for company and headed off to Newcastle.
It would have been nice to have had more notice so we could have spent the day shopping in Newcastle; but nevertheless at 3pm on arrival in Newcastle it was not worth the rush to spend one hour speed shopping at Charlestown or Greenhills.
Strawberries have just come into season and they have been beautiful.
It was definitely time to make Strawberry Jam.
Firstly I weighed 1.3 kilos of strawberries, rinsed, hulled and roughly sliced them into a big bowl.
I weighed them again to find it had reduced to 1 kilo of lovely fresh strawberries.
Squeeze over the juice of two organic lemons, removing the seeds.
Let rest for 30 minutes.
Then weigh 1 kilo of white sugar and add to the strawberry/lemon mixture.
Pour into a big non reactive saucepan (I used a non stick pan)
and bring to a boil, stirring constantly until the sugar is dissolved.
Place on lid and let cook away, on a high simmer for about 30 minutes.
Pour into sterilised jars, seal while hot and label with name and date.
This Strawberry Jam will keep for 12 months.
You can store it in your pantry, but once open it must be stored in the fridge.
Make sure you give some jam to friends, to share the strawberry joy!
To test if your jam is cooked enough, place a ceramic saucer in the freezer.
After 30 minutes put a small spoonful onto the saucer, place back in freezer
then take out and push with your finger. If little wrinkles occur then the jam is ready.
If not, cook for another 5 minutes and test again.
N.B. Sterilise jars by placing clean glass ones into your oven and turn to 150C.
Then turn off and leave jars inside while the jam is cooking.
I place the lids in a bowl and pour over boiling water, leaving for 10 minutes.
Bon Appetitio, Enjoy, Merryn.