Monday, June 20, 2011

To everything (turn turn turn) there is a season (turn turn turn)

You're welcome for getting that awesome song stuck in your head.

Strawberry season is here, and it marks the beginning of another season - preserving! I headed over to a U-Pick strawberry place for the first round of 2011 berry picking. Compared to last year, when the berries were huge and so easy to find and pick, this year's harvest was disappointing. The berries were small, overripe and lost in some pretty substantial weeds. We persevered, though, and I gleaned a little over 2 quarts after I hulled the haul.

And so this morning before work, I poured a hefty amount of sugar over my washed and hulled berries. Tonight, to the canner they go! I made jam last year, which I'm still working through, and a strawberry lemonade concentrate that was yummy. But really, my true love is strawberry shortcake. This year I'm putting up some strawberries in syrup so that come winter I can chow down on some summery goodness.

A corollary food tidbit: I got lazy last year and just froze a bunch of berries instead of canning more. I've been making breakfast smoothies with the frozen berries, a banana, and a strawberry-banana Chobani. Yummmmm. By the time I get to the office, the berries have fully thawed and it's almost at a drinkable consistency. I heartily recommend it!

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