Sunday, July 3, 2011

Red berries and other good stuff

With great excitement, I present my first home-grown raspberry:

Isn't it lovely? I'm sure there will be a few more, which is good, since my daughter has already eaten this one.

These raspberry shrubs join three strawberry plants and two currant bushes as my garden expansion for the 100 YARDen DASH -- a challenge that backyard gardeners in Marquette issued to their friends in Traverse City to convert more yard space to food production. Needless to say, Traverse City will not be victorious on my meager efforts, but Leah did enjoy the raspberry as much as the junk food she purchased this morning from the snack wagon now open at the neighborhood park.

Meanwhile, organic strawberries are still abundant at Oryana and the farmer's market, and strawberry farmer extraordinaire Sandee Ware tells me she'll probably have them for another week. I can barely close my freezer door as I've packed in at least a dozen quarts of strawberries, most of which are destined for winter smoothies, if they last that long. My son enjoys summer smoothies and has gone through at least a few quarts in the past week. So I keep capping and freezing.

Of the many delicious ways to eat strawberries, my favorite is one of the simplest. The recipe:

Sharon's Strawberry Heaven

Fresh, organic strawberries
Cream (Shetler's, for those in northern Michigan)

Cap and wash the strawberries. Whip the cream. Spread a little Nutella on the strawberry and dip it in the whipped cream. Enjoy!

If you're too lazy to whip cream, skip it and just spread on the Nutella; it will still be so delicious. However, whipped cream can be made in seconds with a powerful hand blender (I recommend adding the attachment set).

And allow me a brief comment on the Nutella. Some readers may be bewildered at my recommendation of a commercially processed food. In my defense, I'll simply point out that brilliant food writer Mort Rosenblum (remember how much I love him?) devoted an entire chapter of his Chocolate: A Bittersweet Saga of Dark and Light to Nutella. His chocolate muse, ChloĆ« (a Frenchwoman who is paid to taste artisan chocolates -- why did the Duke career planning services not tell me about that job opportunity?) is a Nutella nut. Enough said.

Finally, here's a great read on Salon today titled Thomas Jefferson, America's original foodie.


  1. Sharon, I made Nutella once using crispy hazelnuts from Sally Fallon's recipe. And it was good.