Celebrate…Strawberries!

It’s strawberry season!  I don’t know about you, but after a winter of apples, oranges, and bananas, I always look forward to local, organic strawberries.  Take a look at the ones I picked up at the local farm today:   2014-05-26 22.10.12

Yes…they taste even more amazing than they look!  If you are fortunate enough to have an organic farm close by that sells these gems, don’t hesitate to buy them  Once you’ve eaten an organic berry that is locally grown…not shipped across the country… it will be hard to accept anything else.  But for those who don’t have access to a local organic farm, try the next best thing…PICK YOUR OWN STRAWBERRIES.  Check local farms in your area that allow you and your children to pick your own berries.  It’s a great way to get kids to enjoy the “fruits” of their own labor ( pun intended). Local berries are often a better option than those you buy in the supermarket since they are less likely to be heavily sprayed with pesticides since they don’t have to be shipped anywhere.

So, in celebration of STRAWBERRIES, why not make make some for dessert tonight?  All you need are:  Strawberries and…

You really don’t need anything else, but IF YOU INSIST on something sweeter, try:

1. Slicing them onto pound cake or ice cream and adding whipped cream.

2. Throw some into yogurt or in a smoothie.

3. Melt some morsels or dark chocolate and dip the berries into it.  Set on a waxed paper covered tray or cookie sheet and refrigerate until chocolate hardens.  What better way to enjoy two of the best foods around.

What is your favorite way to enjoy strawberries?

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Is there anything better than Fresh Strawberries?

Thanks to the early warming of the weather this year, local strawberries are ready at my neighborhood food stand.  Besides the great feeling I get from “eating local”, I am lucky to have an organic CSA farm close by as well. If you’ve never tasted a local organic strawberry, there is nothing to compare. Sweet, juicy, ruby red and no sugar needed. They are great to eat out of hand, sliced in yogurt or on cereal. And just when you think they can’t taste any better, try dipping them in melted dark chocolate. If you know a better definition of heaven on earth, let me know.

There are many places that let you pick your own berries. This is a great way to get children outdoors. You save money when you pick your own, and each berry is perfect when you get to inspect as you pick.  When the picking is done, it may look like you have too many and don’t know what to do with them.  Here are some simple recipes that will make those berries disappear.

STRAWBERRY SMOOTHIE: PLACE THE FOLLOWING INGREDIENTS IN A BLENDER: 1 c. plain organic yogurt, 1/4 c. orange juice, 1 banana, 1 c. fresh strawberries, stems removed. Blend until smooth. Serves 2.

You can also make Frozen Pops from the smoothie mix by pouring it into paper cups and inserting a popsicle stick in each. Freeze. Tear the paper cup away from the pop and eat.

Make an easy STRAWBERRY SAUCE for ice cream by putting 2C strawberries in a blender or food processor and pulsing until the consistency of syrup.  If you want it a bit sweeter, try a T of agave syrup or pure maple syrup. (NOT pancake syrup).

Our local organic farm is: muthfamilyfarm.com/  Check your own neighborhood for local strawberries and pick-your-own farms. Once you’ve tasted these gems, the drab, cardboard replicas sold in grocery stores will never match up.  Happy Eating!