Local strawberries will be ready to pick in the next month, and I can't wait. (Right Heeman's ?) Heeman's farm is our local pick-your-own farm, and we've taken the kids there every June to get real strawberries.
I used to eat the giant mutant strawberries from the grocery store, but realized I don't like the taste of cardboard when I eat my fruit. So, I put off my addiction for the luscious berries for the few weeks in June that we can get our own locally in Southern Ontario.
I finally realized that washing, stemming and freezing them in a single layer in a freezer bag allows me to extend the joy into the depths of winter, but nothing beats the warm juicy first ones of the summer.
A great article from the NPR last week ("The Secret Life of California Strawberries"), provides some nice insight into the massive tasteless strawberries we get the rest of the year. Although these berries have been bred to be big, disease resistant, colourful and productive, it is at the expense of taste. In the case of strawberries, big and beautiful is NOT always better.
Strawberries are an excellent source of Vitamin C, folic acid, antioxidants and fibre. These vitamins may help boost the immune system, lower blood pressure, lower LDL cholesterol, and improve GI function, not to mention helping to manage weight by making you feel full longer.
RECIPE: STRAWBERRY COMPOTE.
Use this recipe as a topping for ice cream, a spread on toast, or just eat it out of the jar! Just promise me you'll use fresh, local strawberries.
Do you wait all year for local berries, or do you cave in and buy whatever's available?
Let me know!