Ground Cherry Jam Recipe with Green Tea and Ginger

Friends Drift Inn Farm – Guest Post Recipe

Ground Cherry Jam Recipe Guest Post Amanda Paa

There was much drama here at the big red barn when Network Solutions went down for four days. I was not the only one impacted; there was a whole contingent of us on Twitter. Amanda Paa, Twitter handle @SweetnSnazzy, was a fellow food blogger down for the count. Amanda lives up in Minnesota but we were thrown together in gloom, doom and bourbon as the website crisis played out. When her site came back up, I just had to take a look. I was so envious she had ground cherries….I did not grow them this year. Amanda’s site is delightful and it’s GLUTEN FREE! Go visit Amanda at Healthy Life, Happy Cook and follow @SweetnSnazzy on Twitter Post Script: Sadly, I have lost touch with Amanda and her site seems to be abandoned. However, I think she might have written a book! Giggles Check out Smitten with Squash (Northern Plate)

Canning Recipe Guest Post
Amanda Paa “Healthy Life, Happy Cook”

Welcome Amanda!

I was excited when Joyce asked me to write a guest post, but that excitement doubled when she said the focus would be on ground cherries! Ground Cherries are one of my favorites and one of the most unique fruits! Living in Minnesota, the cold, snowy winter blankets our farmer’s fields and bounties that were once bursting at the seams from April through October. My philosophy is enjoy all these fresh foods straight from the farmer’s hands while at their peak and also preserve a fair share for when I can’t even make it out the front door. In Minnesota a 6 foot high snow bank locking me in is not unusual!

Ground Cherry Jam Recipe Measuring Ground Cherries

There is nothing better than savoring a piece of fresh bread that sparkles from the gloss of your favorite jam! Ground Cherry Jam will become on of your favorites!

Ground cherries are in the physalis family, along with tomatillos and gooseberries. They grow wild here in Minnesota, as I remember them doing so out on my great grandmother’s farm, alongside her house and the fences that lined her acreage. Every summer the bushes would appear, which made my sweet tooth very happy. The only thing I didn’t enjoy: always being chosen to peel buckets of them for the pies and jams she would create. Grandmother said, “my small hands were perfect for peeling the husks of the small cherries”.

Go foraging for these fall fruits if you can! If ground cherries don’t grow wild in your area, most seed catalogs carry them for garden planting. Ground cherries tend to reseed themselves each year so in the spring you will have little “bonzai” like plants shooting up in your garden, providing you with the delicious fruit. They are harvested from the end of July to the first frost. Ground cherries keep great because of the protection provided by the husk. In a cool, well ventilated area they will keep for up to six months!

What Do Ground Cherries Taste Like?

Ground Cherry Jam Recipe foraging for fruit
The first time I tasted a ground cherry, my tastebuds said “Pineapple”? No….. there was more to it…. “Strawberry?”….not quite. They are obviously not one or the other, but a perfect marriage between the two. They are sweet with a touch of tanginess and they pop open when you bite into them! And seriously, what could be cuter than a fruit housed in a little paper like lantern?

My favorite way to showcase them (besides devouring them plain) is through a beautiful jam, complimented with green jasmine tea and ginger. My inspiration for this jam came to me while enjoying a peaceful breakfast on a chilly September morning. A cup of Tazo “Om” tea was warming my hands and soul, a bowl of oatmeal with ground cherries and agave nectar nourishing my body. This was the first time I had tried this tea, which has a blend of peach and cucumber flavors. When I took a sip of the tea after I had my first bite of the ground cherry oatmeal, I absolutely loved how well the taste melded with the tropical flavor of the cherries. The ideas started churning, and the next thing I knew I had created a little bit of liquid gold.

As you can see, the deep amber color of this Ground Cherry jam is stunning. The ginger brings out the richness of the ground cherries, and the agave nectar creates such a smooth taste and texture.

Amanda says the /Minneapolis Farmers Market often has ground cherries. Shop Farmers Market First!

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About Joyce Pinson

Joyce Friend Pinson is a regional farm-to-table columnist for the Appalachian-News Express. She is a local television host. Her column show and blog, Friends Drift Inn, explores food, gardening, and real life farm-to-table stories from the perspective of a baby boomer in Appalachia. Joyce has a background in agriculture, media, and small business. Joyce is an heirloom gardening addict and home canner. She has a penchant for big hats, pointy toed shoes, and bourbon. Along with her husband Charlie, Joyce really does live in a barn where they ballroom dance. And laugh. And cook. And giggle.