This post is sponsored by Florida Strawberry Growers Association in conjunction with a social media campaign through Sunday Supper LLC. All opinions are my own.
If you've been following me for some time now, you know I love my grown in the USA, winter Florida strawberries! The season began back in November. But sadly, it's about to come to an end in April...and that doesn't make me happy.
There's only one thing to do...and that's purchase as many berries as I can (many of my stores here in Ohio are still carrying them) and find a way to preserve that sweet, berry flavor! If you are lucky enough to live in Florida, mid-March is the time that many of the strawberry fields open to U-pick. U-pick farms are a great way to have fun with your family out in the fields picking berries. Be sure to dress for the weather, wear sunscreen, and bring beverages to stay hydrated! For more information on U-pick Farms and tips for picking berries visit http://floridastrawberry.org/association/u-pick
The fastest and easiest way I've found to preserve Florida strawberries is to turn them into puree and freeze them to enjoy all year long! I use my blender to make puree. Last week, I processed 2 full pounds of berries in a little over a minute in my blender. Some people like to add sugar to their berries when they puree them, I prefer to leave them without added sugar. I do, however, like to add the juice of half a lemon to every two pounds I process to help keep the puree a nice bright red color. Whether you add sugar or lemon juice is your choice.
Once the berries have been processed, you can either leave the seeds in, or you can press them through a fine mesh sieve to remove the seeds. The seeds don't bother me, so I leave them in. I pour the puree into a clean ice cube tray. Each "cube" holds approximately 1 TBS. of puree. The puree freezes quickly in these trays, as well as releases easily. Since each "cube" is about 1 TBS. of puree, it makes it really easy to measure out what you need for recipes!
Once the puree is sufficiently frozen, I pop them out of the tray and place in a labeled plastic freezer bag to use all year long!
I use them frozen or I defrost the cubes in the fridge overnight to be used in recipes!
Ideas for using frozen strawberry puree:
- Replace some of the water called for in boxed cake mixes with defrosted strawberry puree for strawberry flavor and an extra moist cake!
- Use frozen, as cubes, in sparkling water, ginger-ale, or lemonade for a nice strawberry enhanced beverage!
- Combine a couple of frozen cubes with ice cream and milk for a delicious strawberry milkshake.
- Use defrosted puree to make a yummy strawberry vinaigrette for your salad.
- Defrost several cubes and use the puree to make Strawberry Swirl Coffee Cake (recipe below).
Strawberry Swirl Coffee Cake
A moist, buttery coffee cake swirled with strawberry puree and topped with a buttery crumb.
- 1 cup of frozen strawberry puree, defrosted (no sugar added)
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 TBS cornstarch, dissolved in 1 TBS water
- 1 tsp. unsalted butter
- 5 TBS unsalted butter, room temperature
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg, room temperature
- 1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1/2 cup all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
- 6 TBS unsalted butter, cut into cubes, cold
- To make the strawberry swirl: Combine the puree, 1/4 cup granulated sugar, and cornstarch slurry in a small saucepan and cook until it begins to bubble. Cook one minute longer. Take off heat and add 1 tsp. unsalted butter. Stir to combine. allow to cool to room temperature.
- Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray 13" x 9" baking dish with baking spray (like Baker's Joy). Set aside.
- To make the cake: In large bowl, combine the butter and 3/4 cup sugar with mixer until light and fluffy. Add egg and vanilla extract. Beat until light. (2 min or so)
- In small bowl, combine 2 cups flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
- Add half the flour mixture to the butter mixture and combine. Pour in half buttermilk and combine. Repeat with remaining flour and buttermilk, mixing until just combined. (Over mixing will produce a tough cake.)
- Spread batter into prepared pan. Drop cooled strawberry mixture onto the batter by spoonfuls. With a butter knife, pull and swirl the strawberry mixture into the cake batter. Set aside.
- To make the crumb topping: Combine 1/2 cup flour, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, 1/2 tsp. cinnamon, and 1/4 tsp. kosher salt in small bowl. With pastry blender or fingers, work cold butter into the mixture until it is the size of small peas. Sprinkle topping evenly over the cake.
- Bake in oven for 40 - 45 minutes, or until a tester comes out clean. Cool in pan for at least 30 minutes. Can serve warm or cold. Garnish with powdered sugar and more puree, if desired.
Prep Time: 00 hrs. 20 mins.
Total time: 65 mins.
Recipe inspired by Pioneer Woman
Join me in following Florida Strawberries on all their social sites!
Check out all the ways the Sunday Supper Tastemakers are preserving Florida Strawberries:
- Strawberry Cheesecake Icebox Pie by Food Done Light
- Strawberry Eton Mess by That Skinny Chick Can Bake
- Strawberry Compote Pavlova Parfaits by My Sweet Zepol
- Strawberry Crepe Cake with Homemade Strawberry Syrup by Recipes, Food and Cooking
- Strawberry Crumble Bars by A Kitchen Hoor's Adventures
- Dark Chocolate Strawberry Granola Clusters by Simple and Savory
- Strawberry Dust Grilled Pork Tenderloin by Gluten Free Crumbley
- Strawberry Granola with Dried Strawberries by Dizzy Busy and Hungry
- Strawberry Pancakes Recipe by Life Tastes Good
- Strawberry S'mores by The Crumby Cupcake
- Strawberry Frosted Baked Cardamom Donuts by The Chef Next Door
- Strawberry Mocha Yogurt Smoothie by Casa de Crews
- Strawberry Parfait by Desserts Required
- Strawberry Smoothie Bowls by Family Foodie
- Strawberry Swirl Coffee Cake by Renee's Kitchen Adventures
- Balsamic Pickled Strawberries Sundae by A Mind "Full" Mom
- Pickled Strawberry Pepper Feta Salad by Go Epicurista
- Shortcake with Vanilla Bean Pickled Strawberry by Authentically Candace
- Sparkling Strawberry Cocktail by Sunday Supper Movement
- Strawberry Detox Vinegar Drink by Cricket's Confections
- Tuna Burger with Pickled Strawberry Relish by Cindy's Recipes and Writings
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