Berry Season: What To Do With Fresh Fruit
The berry season is one of my favorite times in the garden as fresh berries make great ‘in the garden, right off the plant’ snacks as I go around. My plants are in the second year and they did produce quite well but I want to add a few more so that the season is extended and there are some for preserving. Both strawberries and raspberries have spring producing varieties as well as ones that produce all season long, so I have some decisions to make for next year. My blueberries are just a year old and although one is full of berries ripening, the rest have had just a few berries each this year. As the blueberry bushes grow, I should have a long blueberry season as well as longer strawberry and raspberry seasons.
Berry Season Treats!
Having said that, I think the best way to have fresh fruit is with a dollop of cream and nothing else. We have also had enough for breakfast and some desserts this past few weeks. Last weekend I did the pastry with custard, decorated with strawberries and raspberries from the garden plus some green grapes.
The whole dessert took just 90-minutes because I was able to put the pastry into the oven with the roast chicken and made the custard while the pastry was cooking (about 25 minutes at 375 degrees). When both the pastry and custard where cooled, I spread the custard into the case and decorated with the fruit all while the meat and vegetables were cooking. Thus, the whole meal, chicken, veg and dessert were well under 2 hours from start to table. My late grandmother taught us that you never cook just one thing in the oven because it is a waste of energy – I think that she would be pleased with my meal planning this week.
The one thing I miss about the berry season is the lack of rhubarb which always goes well with strawberries and is ready at the same time. Strawberry and rhubarb pie is a great mix but I have tried three times now to grow rhubarb but it just doesn’t like the heat and humidity of the south nor the mild winters.