Pickled Strawberry Jam

Was it just a few weeks ago that I wrote about making refrigerator pickles? Well, since then I've made all sort of veggie pickles; cucumbers, green beans, carrots, sugar snap peas (recipe coming soon!) And now, Pickled Strawberry Jam. But don't be scared of that "Pickled" in the title. Really the jam just starts out with a little vinegar, a few spices, and lots of sugar but ends up just barely tart with a hint of something extra. Something delicious.

The recipe is by Christina Tosi, the genius behind the desserts at Momofuku Milk Bar and the other restaurants in the Momofuku empire. Katy came across the recipe at The New York Times online and sent me the link, knowing it was right up my alley. Two hours later I was buying two pounds of strawberries, cardamom pods and powdered pectin. And seven hours after that I was dripping molten strawberries on my brand new mint green tennis shoes. The shoes survived, but next time I'll definitely use a larger saucepan. Mine bubbled over and made a sweet smelling mess all over my stove top.

I halved my strawberries instead of just hulling them because I prefer smaller chunks of fruit. But next time I might crush the strawberries a bit. Even halved the pieces were a bit difficult to smoosh with my spoon during the cooking process. I used Rice Vinegar instead of Rice Wine Vinegar. The jam wasn't quite as "pickled" or sour as I was expecting and I wonder if the switch contributed to the subtlety. I might add an extra cardamom pod next time and/or crush the coriander a bit to increase the spice presence. Either way, the jam tasted fantastic. I loved it on plain Greek yogurt and with a little butter on hot biscuits. I can't wait to try it spooned over vanilla bean ice cream (update : best sundae ever!) or maybe on my little chocolate cakes.

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Pickled Strawberry Jam
Fresh, sweet and just a little tart, this jam tastes like summer in a jar. Recipe by Christina Tosi, of Momofuku Milk Bar fame, as printed by The New York Times.
    1 3/4 cups Sugar 1 tablespoon Powdered Pectin 1 teaspoon Salt 3 cups Strawberries, hulled 1 tablespoon Rice Wine Vinegar 2 tablespoons Sherry Vinegar 1 Cardamom pod 5 Coriander seeds
In a bowl, whisk the sugar, pectin and salt to combine. If a seedless jam is desired, purée the berries in a blender and strain through a fine-meshed sieve. Otherwise, leave them whole, or cut large ones into quarters.

In a medium saucepan, combine the sherry vinegar, rice wine vinegar, coriander and cardamom. Bring to a boil over medium heat, and immediately remove from heat. Remove and discard the coriander seeds and cardamom.

Return the saucepan to medium heat and add the sugar mixture, stirring with a wooden spoon until blended; it will be dry at first. Add the strawberries or strawberry purée, and continue to stir, crushing the berries with the spoon, until the mixture is liquefied and comes to a boil. Continue to boil, stirring constantly, until thickened, about 3 minutes.

Pour the jam into a heat-proof bowl and let cool completely. Store it, covered, in the refrigerator. The jam can also be frozen for up to six months.
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 3 cups


  1. Do you think you could water bath this and if so how long would you process? I do love freezer jam, but freezer space is a huge problem.

  2. @anon - I have no experience canning, so I don't want to give you a definitive answer. But I'm pretty sure it could be canned. I googled around and found many recipes using balsamic vinegar or lemon juice, strawberries, and sugar in similar proportions, so this shouldn't be much different. Based on some of the comments for this recipe I would say 10 minutes, making sure to boil the fruit a bit longer.

    Although, to be honest, the yield of this recipe is pretty small (I filled a 1/2 qt/liter jar) that I would recommend making a batch first as described to see if you like it!

  3. I will absolutely be making this. I love making jam, I love cardamom - sold.

    Also, my sister is a graduate of IU!

  4. The vinegar and those spices sound so interesting! I love strawberry jam and I make it when our local strawberries are ready. I might make a batch of this - it looks so good :)

  5. @Mike - Aww, hoosier pride! If you are a cardamom fan, I might suggest adding an extra pod to the vinegar. I didn't really taste it in the jam. Let me know how it turns out!

    @Heidi - It's pretty subtle, the tartness is mostly upfront so once you've had a few bites it just tastes like (really good) strawberry jam. If you try it I'd love to hear what you think!

  6. Thanks for commenting on my blog! Your blog is gorgeous, I love your photographs, you are so talented!

  7. Really enjoyed this recipe and will certainly be passing it on to our community - thanks very much

  8. I made this too and was a little let down by the lack of "pickle." It's gone within a week (I also topped greek yogurt with it), but I thought it tasted only of sugar and strawberries.

    This being said, I will be trying it again, but instead with balsamic and ground black pepper.

  9. @Rachel - Thank you so so much, you totally made my morning!

    @finedininglover - Thanks :D

    @KG - I thought there was a little tang/tartness but agree that it was very subtle. When I make it again I will probably add more spices, I was thinking of (whole) black peppercorn too! And maybe an extra teaspoon or so of vinegar.

  10. Soooo good. I have been rationing out my last teaspoonfuls.

  11. Lovely recipe and photos. I have to ask, where did you find the jar???? I have been searching all over for these kind of jars for making jam.

  12. @Christine - <3 Just got your lovely card!

    @Road Trip Foodie - Thank you! They're Le Parfait jars. I buy mine at a local gourmet cooking shop called Goods. I've also picked up a few at Thrift Shops and the Salvation Army. It looks like Overstock.com has them, but you can only buy them in bulk.

  13. Did you use a whole cardamom pod, or one whole cardamom seed from inside the pod? It seems like a very small amount of liquid to infuse a whole pod. Thanks!

    1. I used just one piece of a pod (http://www.flickr.com/photos/aubrey_rose/5698337480/) thought I didn't think it had much of a cardamom presence!


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