Sunday, April 18, 2010

Strawberry bounty

This weekend, I went to pick strawberries at Sweet Berry Farms in Marble Falls, TX with a few friends. This is the third year I've gone, and once again, we were able to rake in big, delicious berries in very little time. I think we each got about 10-12 pounds of berries in about an hour, although I ended up with about 28 pounds (I pick fast and I've got kiddos who loooove my strawberry jam!).

Berries all over the bushes, just waiting to be picked! (Photo courtesy of Writingweb.)

It was hard to resist eating as we picked, but we managed. (Photo courtesy of Writingweb.)

Writingweb (in pink) and Fuzzypony hard at work picking strawberries.

Me picking berries (thanks Writingweb for the pic!)

It was a teeny bit muddy, with all the rain we've had in the past two days (Writingweb's picture of her feet).

Back home again, with the bounty of our efforts. This is about 35 lbs of berries - each flat holds about 7 lbs of berries (minus the ones the kiddos ate before I took this picture). I picked four flats, and I took one of Fuzzypony's flats home to make jam for her.

One of my favorite things about picking my own berries is that all the berries are not the perfectly-shaped things you find in the store. They come in a rather impressive variety of shapes and sizes, and some of them were just so neat I had to take pictures.

There were a number of berries that had a "thumb".

This one seemed to be growing a "mini-me" off the side.

Strawberries with... heads?


This one takes the prize for an odd berry though... I sort of think it looks like a hermit crab. What do you think it looks like?

A quadruple batch of strawberry jam, made with Pomona Pectin. I love this stuff because it only requires using 1 cup of sugar or honey per 4 cups of berries, as opposed to 7 cups of sugar to 5 cups of berries if you use Sure-Jel. You get more of the flavor of the fruit and less of a sugary taste when using Pomona, so I highly recommend it if you're making jam of any kind.

The current contents of my fridge. It's about this time when I realized that I've only processed HALF of the berries that I never want to see another strawberry again. Well, maybe until next year...

As I finish up this post, I really DO still have the two big stainless steel bowls of berries to process. The smaller bowls on top are the eating berries for the family, although I doubt they'll last past tomorrow night. The small white bowl of sliced up berries are leftovers from the strawberry-topped waffles we had this morning. Still, I've got a lot of strawberries left to process. Normally I turn them into jam or freeze them, but last time I froze them they got a bit freezer burned, so I'm going to try to avoid that this time around. So, I'm thinking about trying to put up some strawberries in syrup so that I could use them in pies or smoothies or strawberry breads, but I need to find a decent recipe. If anyone out there has one, please send it to me! In the meantime, anybody want a strawberry?

1 comment:

  1. Looking at the strawberries is like looking at the clouds and trying to find shapes. Like that second one up there...I see a pup in profile. Very cute!