"Kusina" = Kitchen; "Manang" = older sister

A Filipina's unabashed chronicle of her adaptations in the American kitchen. Includes step-by-step photos on how to make pan de sal, ensaymada, pan de coco, siopao, hopia, pandelimon, pianono, atsara, crema de fruta,etc., and if you are lucky, you will find videos too!

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Monday, July 05, 2004


It has dawned on me how people who live in areas where the summers are short and winters long have mastered the methods of food processing and preserving...from berries (which would have been of little value to Pinoys if they were native berries and grew wild, eaten all through the year for free...) to meats. Come to think of it...how many rotten tomatoes and veggies are being thrown away daily in the Philippines?...I have learned to take advantage of the growing season here...and I have learned to make jams and jellies among other things to preserve the produce that I got from my garden.

These are strawberries from Mom, freshly-picked from her garden.

I and the kids particularly liked the fresh strawberries mushed (in the chopper) and mixed with fresh cow's milk plus sugar...better than strawberry smoothie...

Posted by Hello
And because harvesting is done every 4 days or so, and Mom has 100 strawberry plants in her garden, the buckets we received either had to be eaten right away, or made into JAM...

Sweet and nutritious, strawberries are the first berries of the year. When picking, look for bright-red ones with fresh green leaves. Refrigerate 2 to 3 days, loosely covered. When ready to eat them, give a gentle rinse. Washing or slicing in advance will encourage spoiling.

Some tips from http://www.mycustompack.com/healthnotes/Food_Guide/Strawberries.htm#Nutrition-Highlights%20:
Strawberries freeze well. You can do so with or without sugar. To freeze strawberries using sugar, mix equal amounts of sugar and water in a saucepan. Stir over medium heat until sugar is dissolved and mixture is clear. Cool the mixture completely. Measure 1 cup (149g) of stemmed and sliced strawberries into a 2-cup-size (473.16ml) freezer bag. Pour 1/2 to 2/3 of a cup (118.3,157.7ml) of the sugar/water mixture into the bag,just enough to completely cover the strawberries. Seal and freeze the bag, keeping berries in a single layer.

To freeze strawberries without the use of sugar, set whole, firm berries on a cookie sheet, in a single layer and not touching each other, and place in the freezer. After berries are frozen, put them in a sealable plastic bag. This way they are 'individually frozen' and do not stick together.

Because the moisture content of strawberries varies throughout the season, it is recommended that home-frozen strawberries be used in beverages and sauces, not in recipes where liquid variations could make a difference. (Commercially frozen strawberries are consistent in texture and density.)

Thawing strawberries in the refrigerator will allow them to retain their shape better. When thawing at room temperature, keep the berries in a clean, sanitary environment. Cover and refrigerate unused thawed berries within two hours. Never try to speed up the thawing process by running water over the outside of the container, as that allows bacteria to grow. After thawing, keep berries refrigerated and use within three days. Never re-freeze strawberries.

While still attractive, thawed strawberries may be a little darker and lack the sheen that a fresh berry would have.
We consume about 1 small jar in 2-3 days, on Ritz crackers, or PB&J sandwiches, on pancakes, on muffins, and anything that suits us! Hope you too will enjoy your strawberries!

I also made jelly out of concord grapes.

1 comment:

  1. Strawberries are my favorite, ManangKu! =) Sana magkapitbahay tayo para makatikim naman ako ng mga ginagawa mo. I'm also sure you know that it is a natural energizer. I always feel recharged whenever I take a strawberry smoothie. =)


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