Strawberry Rhubarb Jam & a “Swapiversary” Party

by Tara Bellucci on June 13, 2012

in All Recipes, Fruit, Massachusetts

I’m thrilled to help Boston Food Swap celebrate it’s one year mark on June 21, which they’ve aptly dubbed the one year swapiversary.  Organizations like this,  founded to give local food lovers a place to swap abundant homemade, homegrown or foraged food, have a special place in my heart and my kitchen. -Maggie

Last June, my friends and I nervously bustled about a dingy yet sunny community space in Somerville, smoothing tablecloths and setting up our wares for our very first food swap. The Boston Globe was coming, and we really hoped they wouldn’t be our only guests.

Lyn, Susan, and I started the Boston Food Swap not knowing what to expect. We’re just 3 people who love fresh, local food and wanted a way to meet people who felt the same way. And, when our CSA boxes and market bags overflow, we wanted an outlet share the wealth. We didn’t realize just how much we’d get in return.

On June 21, we’ll be celebrating our First Swapiversary with a fabulous party. For the night, we’ll be leaving behind our pickles and preserves for cocktails and conversation.

We’ll have delicious local appetizers sponsored by Eventbrite and cider from Magners to enjoy while you mingle and ask your burning food-related questions to our VIP SwapStars, experts in their field who can help you with anything from whole grains (Maria Speck) to budget cooking (Amy McCoy) to cordials & cocktails (Maggie Battista!). Bid on silent auction items including signed cookbooks, a BCAE gift card, Boston Organics deliveries, and an Eat Boutique gift box. We’ll send you home with a sweet swag bag including local goodies and kitchen gadgets from Edgeware and Dreamfarm.

Whether you’ve swapped with us from the beginning or you’d like to find out what we’re all about, we’d love for you to help us celebrate the past year. Proceeds from the tickets and the auction go directly to keeping our swaps free for everyone, so we hope you’ll join us  and support local food! (For $10 off Boston Food Swap’s First Swapiversary, use code EBHEARTSBFS at checkout.)

We had about a dozen people at that inaugural swap — mostly people we didn’t know who found us through Meetup or Craigslist and shared our love of homemade food. We now see three times that at each swap, have a Twitter following of over 1,000, and get to learn and grow from our swappers every month.

Last week, I made a strawberry rhubarb basil jam for our June swap, the very same that Lyn made for that first swap 12 short months ago. Strawberries and rhubarb are some of spring’s first produce, full of possibility for the future. This jam was featured in that first Boston Globe article, and marked the beginning of an unbelievable year. I hope the jam continues to work its magic, for us and for you.

Strawberry Rhubarb Basil Jam

adapted from Lyn Huckabee & the Boston Globe

makes about 8 cups

Ingredients:

  • 3 quarts fresh strawberries, hulled
  • 2 pounds fresh rhubarb stalks, chopped
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • 1cup agave nectar or honey
  • 2 tsp Pomona’s Universal Pectin calcium water (follow package directions)
  • 2 tsp Pomona’s Universal Pectin powder (available at Whole Foods — see note)
  • 1cup finely chopped fresh basil

Directions:

  1. In a food processor, combine strawberries, rhubarb, and lemon juice. Pulse 5 or 6 times. For chunkier jam, pulse less; for smoother jam, process more.
  2. Transfer the fruit mixture to a large flameproof casserole. Stir in calcium water. Bring the mixture to a boil over high heat, stirring often.
  3. In a small bowl, mix agave nectar or honey with pectin powder. When the fruit is boiling, add the pectin mixture. Stir vigorously for 1 to 2 minutes to dissolve the pectin. Return to a boil.
  4. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes more. Remove from the heat. Stir in the basil. Transfer to sterilized jars, leave to cool and refrigerate. If water bath canning, return jars to pot and bring to a boil. Process for 10 minutes, remove from pot and allow to cool overnight.

Note: Pomona’s works differently than other brands of pectin, so be sure to follow package instructions if using a different brand. Also, make sure to check the volume of the puree against the chart in the Pomona’s instructions and adjust the pectin measures accordingly.

All recipe photos styled and taken by Tara Bellucci.

Eat Boutique discovers the best small batch foods by boutique food makers. We share recipes, maker stories and city guides to eating boutique. We host tasting events and markets for food makers, cookbook authors and food fans.  We craft seasonal, regional gift and tasting boxes and sell individual items that you can  order today.

Tara Bellucci

Tara Bellucci is a lifelong New Englander who grew up in the kitchen and never left. A founder of the Boston Food Swap, it's her mission to share culinary creations and connect people through the joys of real food. Outside of swapping, Tara writes about décor & design for Apartment Therapy and The Kitchn. See what she’s up to at tarabellucci.com.

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  • http://twitter.com/ShutUpNCook Shut Up & Cook

    I never know what to do with all my rhubarb, so this could be just the ticket. Bummed we didn’t get to meet up at BlogHer, but very excited to have discovered your blog!

    • http://www.eatboutique.com Maggie

      I’m sad we couldn’t meet up as well!! I’d love to make sure we chat at our next shared event. Oh and I LOVE rhubarb, so send it to me! :-) xox

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