This Strawberry Lemonade Marmalade post is sponsored by Newell Brands, makers of Ball® Home Canning products; however, all thoughts and opinions are my own.
Treat your neighbor or celebrate a friend’s upcoming birthday with this Strawberry Lemonade Marmalade + Summer Breakfast in a Basket gifting idea that is sure to dazzle and delight their taste buds.
Some twenty years ago, I stood before a panel of judges slathering homemade jelly onto freshly delivered biscuits from Popeye’s wearing an apron with a giant heart on it. I was competing in a state 4-H competition, under the Horticulture Use category and the three of us, my mom, my county agent and myself were bound and determined to win. Not only was my jelly worthy of bringing home the title, but my apron matched my tablecloth and my tablecloth matched my jar toppers.
All that preparation would pay off, too! From that moment on, I’d forever be known as the state jelly-making champion whose presentation coordinated perfectly and whose addition of warm biscuits and freshly opened jar of jelly sealed the deal.
What has stuck with me, after all this time, was the first couple of lines from my presentation:
“There’s something special about making your own jelly,
Something that just can’t be found in store-bought jelly.
Maybe it’s the satisfaction of preparing the jelly yourself, or perhaps it’s the sense of pride and accomplishment as you gift the delicious jelly to family and friends.
One of my favorite jellies is…..”
Isn’t it amazing (or ridiculous, you choose) that I’m still able to recall the introduction of my presentation?! That goes to show you just how hard they made me practice.
Recently, I was asked to help celebrate the 135th birthday of Ball® Home Canning. Needing no introduction, Ball® has been around since 1880 when Frank and Edmund Ball purchased the Wooden Jacketed Can Company with $200 from their Uncle George. Because my husband works in college athletics, I found it particularly interesting that in 1918, the Ball Brothers would donate the land and buildings of their first plant to a struggling university, that which we now know as Ball State University. Who knew!? Fast forward one hundred years and Ball® Home Canning remains the #1 consumer choice for mason jars in North America.
I can think of no better way to celebrate such a monumental occasion than to get into the kitchen and can something special for a neighbor’s birthday. My competition days may be long gone, but the satisfaction from gifting homemade will stick with me through eternity.
With a quick trip to Target for my canning supplies, I found just about everything I needed to get started tucked inside the Ball® Preserving Starter Kit. The Utensil Set for Preserving includes a Jar Lifter, Bubble Remover/Headspace Tool, Magnetic Lid Lifter and a Jar Funnel. Trust me when I tell you that the Jar Lifter will be your very best friend when it comes time to place the jars in and out of the hot water bath.
Rather than create my own recipe, Ball® Home Canning provided me with some of their fresh and creative recipes for my Summer Breakfast in a Basket project. I found the Strawberry Lemonade Marmalade perfect for the occasion.
- For the Cookie Bars:
- 2 cups flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 large egg
- 2 tablespoons sour cream
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- For the Frosting:
- 5 tablespoon butter, softened
- 3 tablespoon milk
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- desired food coloring
- sprinkles, nonpareils, etc (optional, topping)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a 9x13 baking dish with non sticking cooking spray. Set aside.
In a medium sized bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt.
In a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add in the egg, sour cream and vanilla and mix until combined. Slowly add in the flour, a little at a time, while scraping down the sides of the mixing bowl and until everything is combined. Press the batter (it will be crumbly) into the baking dish, and using the back of a plastic spatula even out the dough. Bake for 15-17 minutes until the edges begin to turn golden brown. Allow the sugar cookie bars to cool completely. Mix together the ingredients for the frosting until light and creamy. Add in the desired food coloring color. Spread the frosting evenly over the bars and sprinkle with nonpareils (optional). Cut into squares and serve.
In case you’re wondering, marmalade differs from jelly or jam in that marmalade uses the peel of a citrus fruit (lemon, lime, oranges, grapefruit, etc) in the boiling process and then again in the inclusion of the actual preserve.
Once your Strawberry Lemonade Marmalade has set, you’re ready to prepare your basket. For my Summer Breakfast in a Basket, I included some homemade biscuits, two jars of my newly made Strawberry Lemonade Marmalade-one for now, one for later, and some mini bottles of orange juice. I also included a mini bottle of champagne for mimosas! Who wouldn’t want to be greeted with that cute little basket first thing in the morning?
I’m raising my hand and hoping someone will treat me, too!