We simply have to start this post with, Yummmmmm!
Wash and cap your strawberries. For every 6 cups of strawberries, you'll need 1 cup of water. Put your strawberries in a large pot, mashing as you add them in, and then pour in your water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and cook for 5 minutes, stirring often to prevent scorching.
Set up your jelly bag, or a colander lined with two layers of cheesecloth, over a large bowl and slowly pour in the cooked strawberries. Allow to drain fully and then refrigerate the juice overnight so any sediment will settle to the bottom. There probably won't be much, but as with jelly, if you skip this part your syrup may end up cloudy.
The next day, ladle the juice off in a large measuring cup, being careful not to get the sediment mixed in. In a separate bowl, measure out 1/2c. sugar for every cup of juice.
In a large pot, heat your juice to a rolling boil.
Do not skimp on pot size here. You'll need the extra room.
Pour in your sugar.
Continue boiling until mixture is slightly thickened. Mine took about 35-40 min.
You'll need to stir this occasionally, but since there are no pieces of fruit in it, it doesn't really stick much.
I checked the thickness by setting a small, stainless steel mixing bowl into a slightly larger bowl that had ice water in it and then pouring just a little syrup into the metal bowl. The cold metal will bring the temp. of the syrup down quickly so you can see how thick it's getting.
Prep your canner and jars while the syrup is cooking so you'll be ready to go once it's done.
BTW - I put my washed jars on a cookie sheet in the oven, with the oven set on 225. That's hotter than boiling water, and much easier than trying to jockey another pot or pan of boiling water around on the stove.
I know some people suggest putting the jars in the canner while it heats, and that would be fine, but I'm usually doing several successive batches of things (I was processing jam when I started the syrup), so that doesn't usually work out for me.
Pour the syrup into to hot, sterilized half-pint jars. Leave 1/4" headspace, wipe the rims and fit with lids and rings. Process in a water bath canner for 5 min. once the water has reached a full boil. Remove from canner and cool overnight. Check for proper seals in the morning.
You'll get roughly 2 half-pints for every 6 cups of strawberries. I started with approx. 18 cups of strawberries and lacked about 1/2" of filling the 6th jar to the proper 1/4" headspace.
But that's okay, because it tasted great on our waffles the next morning.
I've linked this post with the Homestead Barn Hop.
Check out the wonderful posts there.
I've also liked with the Carnival of Home Preserving.