As the Sky Valley moves into the middle of summer, berries are ripening at farms everywhere.
They are wonderful straight off the vine, but are also delightful in baked goods and, of course, made into jam and spread on fresh bread. Here are two favorite recipes of our readers.
Aubrey Springer’s Raspberry Jam
Aubrey Springer, 12, of Monroe, has canned this raspberry jam at the Evergreen State Fair in competition the last two years.
5 cups crushed raspberries
7 cups sugar
1.Fill boiling-water canner and bring to a simmer.
2.Wash jars and screw bands in hot, soapy water; rinse with warm water. Pour boiling water over flat lids in saucepan off the heat. Let the lids stand in hot water until ready to use. Drain well before filling.
3.Prepare fruit. Crush berries 1 cup at a time, using a masher for best results. Measure exact amount of sugar in separate bowl.
4.Measure exact amount of prepared fruit into 6-8 quart saucepot.
5.Stir 1 box of pectin into fruit in saucepot.
6.Bring mixture to a full rolling boil on high heat, stirring constantly.
7.Stir in sugar quickly. Return to full rolling boil and boil exactly 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Skim off any foam.
8.Ladle quickly into prepared jars, filling to within 1/8 inch of tops. Wipe jar rims and threads. Cover with two-piece lids. Screw bands tightly. Place jars on rack in canner. Water must cover jars by 1 to 2 inches; add boiling water if needed. Cover; bring water to gentle boil. Process jam 10 minutes.
9.Remove jars and place upright on a towel to cool completely. After jars cool, check seals by pressing middle of lid with fing (If lid springs back, lid is not sealed and refrigeration is necessary).
10. Let stand at room temperature 24 hours.
Raspberry Lemonade Crumb Muffins
These, too, are courtesy of the Springer family, in which all three kids, Aubrey, 12, Elle, 10 and Blake, 8, are involved in 4H.
¼ cup butter, room temp
¼ cup unsweetened applesauce
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup milk
1 tbsp. lemon zest (about 2 lemons)
1 tbsp. lemon juice
1 tsp. vanilla
1 ½ cups flour
1 ½ tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
1 ½ cups fresh raspberries
¼ cup flour
2 tbsp. butter, melted and slightly cooled
2 tbsp. brown sugar
1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees then line a muffin tin with liners and set aside. Combine butter, unsweetened applesauce and sugar in a large mixing bowl then beat for 1 minute (mixture will look curdled). Add eggs then beat to combine. Add milk, lemon zest, lemon juice and vanilla then beat to combine.
2.In a separate bowl combine flour, baking powder and salt. Add to wet ingredients in three batches, mixing until just combined before adding the next batch. Add frozen raspberries then gently fold into batter.
3.Fill prepared muffin tin cups ¾ of the way full with batter. In a separate bowl mix crumb topping ingredients together with a fork until crumbly. Sprinkle on top of muffins then bake for 23-25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean in the center. Cool in muffin tin completely.
Contributed by Becky Springer