I admit to going a little overboard when I’m out grocery shopping. I’ve mentioned a few times how pretty displays throughout the store pull me in, and before I know it, both my shopping cart and mind are filled with ingredients and ideas for said ingredients.
And that’s all well and good, as long as those groceries aren’t perishable…and then I’m scrambling to use them up before they go bad..
I found myself with about three quarts of strawberries in the refrigerator last week, and decided to make a quick jam. I do love fresh jam, especially when it’s still warm, and I have some warm biscuits to slather it on.
I didn’t have biscuits.
Anyway… while the jam was cooking on the stove, I thought, “Shoot, I should have made a strawberry pie..” And then I thought…it’s not too late… I could make pop tarts instead!
I threw Aunt Linda’s pie crust together (honestly, if you haven’t tried this pie crust recipe, you need to. It will be your “go to” recipe forever) and in no time, had pop tarts thrown together and cooling on a baking rack!
Of course, my finicky Boy (who is my son Mike…I call him Boy) comes walking through the kitchen:
“What are you making?” he asks.
“Strawberry Pop Tarts” I answer.
“Don’t ask me to be your taste tester” he replies.
“There’s a surprise” I respond.
“You know I like chocolate” he said.
“It’s not always about you..” I reply.
Funny…I’m sure you know it…and especially he knows that that couldn’t be further from the truth….but I should mention that he isn’t a little boy that I’m talking to like that…he will be 19 next Sunday…and he is usually deserving of a wise-ass comment from me… which I might add will usually end up with him picking me up and throwing me into the kitchen sink and turning the faucet on…
Ahh…the love of a mother and her son. There is nothing like it. I love my kids more than life itself, and they all know it. You can be sure that I’ll be making those chocolate pop tarts very soon for the little jerk (said lovingly, of course), and maybe, just maybe, for that day, I won’t have to change my wet pants from being thrown in the sink…
Anyway…back to the strawberry pop-tarts. Jess just happened to come walking into the kitchen, during the conversation between boy and me.
“Mmm” she says.
“Thank you for that” I respond, giving boy the “look”.
“You want to go in the sink?” he threatens..
Jess picks one up, and takes a bite…and said that I should make them again, “These are really good”…
And they were. I was surprised that they weren’t huge ordeal to throw them together. What made me really happy was that the crust remained flaky, yet firm enough to be able to pick them up and eat, the jam was perfectly gooey, not runny at all, and a quick royal icing sealed the deal.
A perfect treat for kids of all ages… except for boy, who only wants chocolate.
Life is good..it’s a “too many strawberries in the fridge make for delicious pop-tarts” kind of good..
Homemade Strawberry Pop Tarts
Makes Six Pop Tarts
Just a quick note: This jam is made with pectin. I know..I’m cheating… but it comes in handy to make a quick jam when the mood strikes!
Create a rectangle template from cardboard 3-1/4″ x 5-14″
1-1/2 cups crushed strawberries
1-1/2 tbsp pectin (such as Sure Jell)
1-2/3 cup granulated sugar
Combine the strawberries and pectin in a medium saucepan, and bring to a boil. Add the sugar and continue to stir until the sugar is dissolved. Bring back to a boil, and boil for one minute. Remove from heat, and let cool.
Aunt Linda’s Pie Crust:
2 cups flour
1 cup shortening
½ tsp salt
½ cup milk
1 tbsp vinegar
In a small bowl, mix the milk and vinegar together. Set aside. In a large mixing bowl, blend the flour, shortening, and salt together until mixture is in pea size crumbles. Pour the milk and vinegar mixture into the flour mixture and stir. The dough will be sticky.
Roll out on a generously floured surface, kind of on the thicker side. Lay your template on the dough, and cut out as many rectangles as you can with the first roll out. Repeat rolling and cutting out rectangles until you have 12 rectangles.
Give a cookie sheet a spritz of vegetable spray, and place as many rectangles on the sheet that you can. I was able to fit four.
Spoon some strawberry jam on to each rectangle, filling it to about 1/2” from the edge. Place another rectangle on top, pressing down around the edges with your finger. Crimp around the edges with a fork.
Bake at 350” about 1/2 hour, or until golden brown. Remove from oven, and cool completely on a cooling rack.
Frost with royal icing, and sprinkle with decorating sugar.
Quick Royal Icing:
1 cup powdered sugar
1 tbsp meringue powder
2 tbsp water
Combine the powdered sugar, meringue powder, and water in a medium bowl. Beat with an electric mixer for about 12 minutes or until stiff peaks form.