Whole Strawberry Jam

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This is a runny, French-style jam made with honey not sugar, so it is marginally healthier than a standard jam. It is still high in sugar, though, so this is for a treat on special occasions rather than for every day. Marinating the strawberries in honey overnight sets the fruit, so it stays intact, even on cooking. Have this on spelt toast, oatcakes or a bowl of porridge, and it’s great with natural yoghurt. Pepper cuts through the sweetness, but leave it out if you prefer a classic flavour.

This is one step up from fruit compote, but without sugar, it doesn’t last like standard jam. If you want more of a set, you could add a little pectin to the mixture before bringing it to the boil, or a handful of redcurrants, which are rich in pectin.

Fills 3 x 250g jars

  • 800g strawberries (small are best), hulled
  • 450g clear honey
  • Julienned strands of zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • Julienned strands of zest and juice of 1 lime
  • 2 teaspoons Sichuan peppercorns or coarsely ground black pepper (optional)

Put the strawberries, honey, zests and juice into a bowl, stir well and put into the fridge, covered, and leave overnight.

Put the marinated strawberries and honey mixture into a preserving pan or large saucepan along with the pepper (if using) over a medium heat. Bring to the boil and cook for 5 minutes. Spoon the fruit and pour the juice into warm, dry, sterilised jars (you can sterilise them in a very hot dishwasher or boil them in a pan of water for 10 minutes). Cover with a wax disc and allow to cool. Seal and label the jars with a date.

Store in the fridge and use within 7-10 days.