Balsamic infused Strawberry Jam: The treat you didn't even know you needed in your life...
Let me start off by saying how summer is always one of my favorite times of the year due to variations/ abundance of crops that you have access to. Enter strawberries. There is an abundance of them in stores at this time and for that I am up for the challenge of finding usage for one of nature's sweetest gifts. Had a gf that recently came back from Italy and brought me an amazing bottle of aged balsamic so I put it to good use. The addition of vinegar in a jam adds a depthness that you're not accustomed to on your morning toast or even you vanilla ice-cream. Try it, I promise you'll thank me. What is your favorite summer fruit??
2 cups sugar
1 large lemon, zested and juiced
1 1/2 pints fresh strawberries, hulled and halved or chopped
3 tbsp. of really good balsamic vinegar
Combine the sugar, lemon zest, and lemon juice in a small saucepan and cook over very low heat for 10 minutes, until the sugar is dissolved. Add the strawberries and then the balsamic vinegar and continue to cook over very low heat for 20 minutes, until the strawberries release some of their juices and the mixture boils slowly. What your looking for is the jam to thicken and reduce as it cooks but making sure you are stirring it as it cooks to ensure it does not burn. I like to use a wooden spoon while making it to see how it adheres to it once it gets that 30 minute mark. You may cook for a few minutes more if you don't think its thick enough. Remember it will thicken more as it cools as well.
Poor Jam into a mason jar with lid and put in refrigerator to cool down. Serve once cooled or serve warm with ice cream, the choice is yours!