Strawberry season is in high gear, and we’re getting an abundant harvest from the patch we planted last spring: in one week, 30 lbs. from 30 plants (15 Surecrop and 15 Earligow). And in spite of giving them away right and left, we still have more than we can eat. I used to make strawberry jam, but honestly, we don’t consume much jam in our house and I don’t really want to encourage it given its high sugar content. This year I’ve decided instead to freeze the excess harvest, in preparation for midwinter strawberry muffins and pancakes.
Freezing strawberries is easy. First get rid of the green tops and any part that you’re not going to want to eat. When the strawberries thaw, they’ll be mushy and you won’t want to have to try trimming them then. Arrange the strawberries on a cookie sheet so they’re only barely touching, if at all. The purpose of freezing them this way is to prevent them from sticking together and forming one solid, impenetrable block. Put the strawberry-covered cookie sheet in the freezer and wait an hour or two, until the berries are solidly frozen. Then you can pour them into a Ziploc bag or other freezer container. And when you want them over the winter, you’ll be able to remove just as many individual berries as you want to!
For ideas on what to do with your frozen strawberries, see this post with recipes for strawberry cake and strawberry muffins.