Freezer Strawberry Preserves
|1||cup Stevia In The Raw® Baker’s Bag|
|1 ½||cups apple juice, divided|
|2 ½||pounds ripe strawberries, hulled and cut in 4-8 pieces (see note)|
|2||tablespoons fresh lemon juice|
|1||package no-sugar pectin|
|1/2||cup Sugar In The Raw®|
1. Place the empty canning jars in a hot water canner or other large pot fitted with a rack or lined with a towel, and fill the pot with water to a depth of 1-inch over their rims, making sure the jars stand upright. Bring to a boil, and boil for 10 minutes to sterilize the jars. Sterilize the lids in a small pot of water by simmering them for 10 minutes.
2. Place the Stevia In The Raw® in a mixing bowl. Add ¼ cup of the apple juice and stir until the mixture looks like foamy marshmallow. Set aside until the mixture is clear and looks like light agave syrup, about 20 minutes.
3. Place 1 cup of the strawberries in a large, wide mixing bowl. Using a potato masher, pound the berries until they are mashed and very moist, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the remaining berries 1 cup at a time, mashing well, 1 minute, before making the next addition. Measure 4 cups of mashed berries into a large stainless steel or other non-reactive saucepan. Refrigerate any extra mashed berries for another use
4. Add the remaining apple juice and lemon juice to the mashed berries. Gradually stir in the pectin until it is completely blended with the fruit mixture. Over high heat, stirring constantly, bring the mixture to a hard boil that cannot be stirred down. Off the heat, stir in the Sugar in the Raw until it melts, then add the stevia mixture.
5. Place a folded towel on the counter. Remove the hot sterilized jars, one at a time, from the hot water, drain, and place on the towel. Ladle the hot strawberry preserves into the hot jars. Add a flat lid and twist a screw band into place, making it only finger tight.
6. When all the preserves are jarred, place the sealed jars in the refrigerator to set. Strawberry Freezer Preserves can be frozen for up to 3 months, or stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks.
Note: To get 4 cups mashed fresh strawberries, this allows a bit extra to make up for moldy and crushed berries found when picking over the fruit, and any bad spots or white, unripe parts that have to be cut away.
Per Serving (1 Tbsp.): 16 calories, 0 g fat, 4 g carbohydrate, 0 g protein, <1 g dietary fiber, 0 mg sodium.