City by the Bay Scenes

Day five of San Francisco living. The sun shines a different shade of blue. Not to wax rhapsodic or pile on the romanticism, but the air is a bit different out here. The biggest adjustment is the time difference. Three hours. Football is the first thing to air today. Not a terrible thing, its just not something I'm used to, especially when a beer used to be involved. Now its coffee or tea.

Blue Bottle coffee + saffron vanilla snickerdoodle at the Linden kiosk; 101 Cookbooks just posted the cookie recipe

Fort Mason/Off the Grid food truck park/Fleet Week Airshow - the outdoor volume will return to normal tomorrow.
@theMillSF coffee shop in progress - want to try their thick slices of toast
produce from the Grove + Divisadero Sunday farmers market - fresh figs were $5 a pound & flower bouquets $4 a bunch.

Nopalito's red chile chips + lime + crema (along with the rest of their menu) is crave worthy. And very welcoming and friendly service to boot. Its dangerous and delicious to be living around the corner.

Strawberry Jam + Chiles

What to do with two gallons of strawberries? 

This is a redux recipe from last year.  I've been looking forward to making this strawberry jam again because there is nothing quite like fresh, ripe strawberries fresh off the vine.  This version of jam uses two kinds of sugar with the addition of a few whole black peppercorns for an extra kick.  No special canning required as this jam doesn't last very long in the refrigerator due to it's popularity.

Strawberry Jam with Chiles
adapted from Food52
yield: 2 to 2 1/2 cups

2 pounds sweet, ripe strawberries, hulled and halved (or quartered if large)
2 New Mexico chiles (or more) to taste
4 whole black peppercorns, optional
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup raw (demerara) sugar
Juice of 1/4 lemon

Place the strawberries in a heavy, medium-size pot. Remove the stems and seeds from the chiles (no soaking is required) and discard. Roughly chop the remaining dried chile flesh, and add it to the strawberries. Add the sugars and black peppercorns (if using).

Set the pot over medium heat and bring to a boil -- as the fruit begins to juice, the sugar will melt. Reduce the heat to a steady simmer and cook for about 1 hour. Gently stir every 10 minutes. Taste it every now and then to make sure there's enough chile heat and flavor.

As the jam cooks, use a spoon to lift off any scum that rises to the surface. The jam is ready when the strawberries are shrunken and lightly candied, and the syrup has slightly thickened.  Stir in the lemon juice and remove the pot from the heat.

Serve on toast, scones, ice cream, cakes or biscuits. Refrigerate any leftover jam.  Smile...you just made jam.

Preserved Strawberries with Chiles

Strawberry season means smoothies, short-cakes, scones, pies (with rhubarb), and preserves.  Having never tasted strawberries with chiles, I thought I would test out my curiosity only to discover that this pairing is addictively good.  Even better on toast with goat cheese.  Or toast with butter.  The small batch size means no canning or any complicated steps.   

Preserved Strawberries with Chiles
Makes about 1/2 to 3/4 cup

Adapted (only change was serving size) from Food52 

8 ounces ripe strawberries, hulled and halved (or quartered if larger)
1 New Mexico chile (or ancho), or more to taste
1/2 cup sugar
Juice of 1/4 lemon

1. Place the strawberries in a heavy, medium-size pot. Remove the stems and seeds from the chile (no soaking is required) and discard. Roughly chop or tear the remaining dried chile flesh, and add it to the strawberries. Add the sugar.

2. Set the pot over medium heat and bring to a boil -- as the fruit begins to juice, the sugar will melt. Reduce the heat to a steady simmer and cook for about 1 hour. Stir every 10 minutes or so.  Taste it every now and then to make sure there's enough chile heat-- if not, add another!

3. As the preserves cook, use a spoon to lift off any scum that rises to the surface. The preserve is ready when the strawberries are shrunken and lightly candied, and the syrup has thickened but is not so thick that it's like jelly. Stir in the lemon juice and remove the pot from the heat.

4. Serve on toast or scones with butter, over ice cream and on cakes or biscuits. Refrigerate any leftover preserves.