Think Like Grandma... Freeze Your Berries

You go out to the field with your family and spend all that time stooped over seeking out nature's sweetest rewards. The berries are red and ripe. You would know, you've taste tested a couple already. You couldn't resist that plump, dangling berry calling your name. Before you know it, the kids look adorable with their strawberry-stained faces and your flat is heaping with mounds of fresh picked strawberries, given to you by Mother Nature herself. Your smiling, and then it dawns on you. "What in the heck am I going to do with all these berries? They'll mold and rot and I'll have to throw them out. What a shame." That's when Grandma pops in your head and says, "Freeze those berries. Don't waste them! Enjoy them while their long-gone out of season. That's what we would of done."

When Measuring Strawberries:
1 1/2 pounds = 2 pints or 1 quart
1 pint = 3 1/4 cups whole berries
1 pint = 2 1/4 cups sliced berries
1 pint = 1 2/3 cups pureed berries
1 cup = 4 ounces

Dry Sugar Pack
Sprinkle sugar over berries, using 2/3 to 3/4 cups sugar for each quart of fruit. Gently turn berries over and over until the sugar is thoroughly dissolved before packing in containers.

Syrup Pack
Make a syrup using 1 1/4 cups water with a 1 cup of sugar. Dissolve the sugar in either cold or hot water; if hot water is used, be sure to chill the syrup before using. Use about 1/2 to 2/3 cup of syrup for each pint.

Pectin Syrup
Combine one box powdered pectin with one cup water in sauce pan; stir and boil for one minute. Stir in 1/2 cup sugar and dissolve. Remove from stove and add enough cold water to make 2 cups syrup; chill the mixture before using. This amount should coat approximately 16 pints of berries.

Unsweetened Pack
Cover whole or sliced berries with water or berry juice containing one teaspoon of Fruit Fresh to each quart of liquid.