I like to pick smallish strawberries to use in this recipe. They do shrink as well. When you let the strawberries rest with the sugar and balsamic, water is removed from the berries by osmosis. This leaves them firm so they will not disintegrate in the processing.
I like to serve this with cheeses or pates. But it is equally good with plain yogurt or on toast.
Strawberry Balsamic Black Pepper Preserves
5 cups whole strawberries
5 cups sugar
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
1 pouch Certo liquid fruit pectin
1 teaspoon coarsely cracked black pepper
Measure whole, hulled berries into saucepan. Add vinegar. Add sugar. Mix well and let stand up to 4 hours. The longer it stands, the firmer the fruit.
Place on high heat and bring to a full rolling boil. Boil hard for 2 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in liquid pectin.
Process with the water bath method.