In this week's So Many Fairies story, “The Strawberry Farm,” Billy Wilkins is bored — bored with his house just outside of the city, bored with his little room, and bored with his big sister. His parents think that a summer with his grandparents at the family strawberry farm is just the ticket. But no one prepares Billy for the magic and wonder that he will encounter!
At age 1½, my youngest has begun what looks to be a lifelong love affair with strawberries. After eating her weight in berries at a strawberry farm earlier this year — one just like Billy's grandparents' place — she began requesting a portion of fresh “bears” every single day. While they're sticky to wash off, the sweet smell that clings to her chubby cheeks (and hair!) after she's demolished a bowlful is heaven. Like Billy, we've found both magic and wonder in strawberry season.
But while my daughter loves her strawberries fresh and whole, my favorite way to eat strawberries these days is to roast them.
By slow roasting fresh strawberries, you turn a succulent treat into something truly decadent. As the strawberries cook down, their natural sugars concentrate into a thick, jammy sauce that's as delicious on biscuits as it is on a bowl of dark chocolate ice cream. It's not quite as thick as proper jam (and it's definitely not shelf stable), but this sauce is so sweet and perfect that you won't even mind the difference.
Give this one a try before strawberry season flies off into the magical summer sunset!
Roasted Strawberry Sauce
(makes ½ pint sauce)
- 2 pounds strawberries
Preheat your oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Wash and hull the strawberries, cutting the larger ones into halves and quarters. Then, set them out in a single layer on a parchment covered, rimmed baking sheet.
Roast the strawberries for 45 minutes, then increase the oven temperature to 375 degrees and roast them for 15 minutes more. The edges of the pan will begin to blacken and you'll smell something akin to roasted marshmallows.
Remove the strawberries from the oven and allow them to cool slightly before scooping them into a mason jar or other lidded container, using a fork to mash the berries slightly as you do so. Be sure to scoop up all of the thick juices, too!
This sauce will keep for about a week in the fridge and for several months in the freezer. Serve it over ice cream, on toast, or wherever you like strawberry jam.
About the Author
The Sparkle Kitchen Series is created by Meryl Carver-Allmond.
Meryl lives in a hundred year old house near the prairie with her sweet husband, two pre-schoolers, one puppy, one gecko, and about ten chickens. While she's been writing since she could pick up a pen, in recent years she's discovered the joy of photography, too. She feels lucky to be able to combine those skills, along with a third passion--showing people that cooking for themselves can be healthy and fun--in her weekly Sparkle Kitchen posts.
When Meryl isn't writing for Sparkle Kitchen, you can find her on her personal blog, My Bit of Earth, where she writes about chickens, babies, knitting, gardening, food, photography, and whatever else tickles her fancy on any given day.