Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Strawberry Summer

Summer definitely feels like it is in full swing.  The temperatures are in the 80's with the weather being either being sunny or thunderstorms.  The kids seem to live in their bathing suits, and I seem to move between the pool and the central air.  Life is almost peaceful, or at least as peaceful as it gets with a 2 year old and a 4 year old.

I forgot to take pictures!
We went strawberry picking last week, since my strawberries aren't going to make it this year.  It's always a delicious experience, even though the kids ate more berries then they picked.  I tried my hand at making preserves, and it was only a partial success.  The end results were a bit more liquidy than I wanted, though it solidified in the fridge.  It also meant I had to try my hand at canning...which absolutely terrifies me to be honest.  I'd love to give some of these preserves away but I'm scared that people will open them and find mold growing on the top because I did something wrong.

We also made plenty of strawberry shortcake.  I like mine with angel food cake and whipped cream!  And my dirty secret is that I hardly ever use sugar when I use freshly picked berries.  They are so ripe that upon slicing and sitting overnight, there is plenty of strawberry goodness liquid that sugar isn't needed.  I love it so much!

For the Fourth, I made a Strawberry-Rhubarb pie, and it was absolutely delicious!  It was a normal pie, except I cut out stars for the top of the crust instead of lattice.  It was quite cute.  I wish I had gotten a picture.  :(

9” pie crust plus extra crust for making lattice or cutting out stars
2 cups strawberries, hulled and sliced
4 cups rhubarb, sliced
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup flour
2 TB cornstarch

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
Clean and slice fruit and combine in large bowl.
Add sugar, cornstarch and flour to fruit and stir to mix. Let the fruit mixture sit for about 10 minutes so the juices release. Pour the filling evenly into the crust.  You can put on a top, lattice it or cut out stars and place them around the pie.  I usually cover a good chunk of the filling, though I never overlap the stars.

Bake for 10 minutes at 425, then lower heat to 325 and bake for an additional 30-40 minutes.

Very easy, and very delicious!  I still have a few more berries left.  I might make a strawberry bread if I get a chance (no flour in the hose right now).  If I were really brave, I'd make Strawberry Wine!

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