Monday, July 07, 2008

Gorgeous freshly picked strawberries...

Thank you for the supportive comments and e-mails we have received over the past couple of days! We are humbled and will do our best to continue on with this creative outlet for as long as we are able to. We'll keep taking names (please use that post if you would like to enter the drawing) until Wednesday and will post the winner of the cookbook on Friday!

Jeff and I recently headed over to a local farm that had the most beautiful strawberries we have seen in a long time!

Due to the late start this year, the ruby berries were extraordinarily sweet, big and oh so juicy. Once we arrived at the farm, we grabbed our picking box and hopped on the only way to travel to the many rows flowing with the berries - by tractor! As you can see, we were not the only one with the idea to get outside and have fun pickin' strawberries.

Even though I thought I had picked over my row with my now red-stained hands, as I was walking back to finish up our box, I couldn't resist snagging a few unseen berries that glimmered in the sun, even though my hands were already full!

See! Can't even think of holding anymore now!

It took us less less than 45 minutes to achieve this heaping box of berries - the net weight? 15 pounds!

Once we were done, we walked around the farm a bit to check out the sights. They had a little area full of different animals that the kids could feed (and Jeff too...) and even though he was happy with feeding the animals, I think he was a little disappointed that he was too big to fit into the little cow train they were giving rides in! Hee hee!

We missed this sign heading in, but I think it says it all, especially when going picking for fresh strawberries.

By the time we had gotten home, I think my belly needed a break, but my taste buds said otherwise! So, while I should have worked some of them into a dessert, we wanted to go a different, slightly savory direction, and prepared this Strawberry Spring Salad as a side to dinner.

Use your favorite greens - we decided on a crisp red romaine we picked up from the market on the way home. Because we wanted the berries to shine, the generous dressing for this salad is fairly light, yet has enough tang to keep your attention. To balance the bite from the white wine vinegar, a drizzle of honey is added, along with a little olive oil. To top off the dressed salad, toasted pine nuts are sprinked over to lend a buttery crunch. The fresh berries were kept in quarters for some heft - this gave you something juicy and a little more substantial to sink your teeth into against the greens. As an afterthought, I think both of us would have loved a few crumbles of creamy goat cheese scattered on top to add a little richness and spunk to round the salad out.



  1. Looks like you both had a good time. I am looking forward to more strawberry recipes, in your upcoming posts. I know they will be yummy!

  2. Thse are really gorgeous Joe, and it sure looks like fun to pick them. I wouldn't mind to ride on that cow train with Jeff, lol!

  3. Darn, I would have loved to see a picture of Jeff on the cow train! Enjoy the strawberries. Yum!

  4. What farm did you guys go to? That looks like a great idea for a weekend activity when my sister and her kids come to visit later this month!

  5. What farm did you go to? I have been looking for a place to go pick berries! And yours look perfect!


  6. Mmmmm, those strawberries look really good! And you managed to stay so clean. I always look like I've been in a war zone when I come out of the strawberry field - just a muddy, red, straw covered mess....Oh, I meant to ask, do you have a source for bulk pine nuts? Or am I answering my own question - Trader Joe's?

  7. Those berries are screaming to be dipped in chocolate with those long, luxurious stems attached! That salad looks like the perfect answer to these muggy days we've been having.

  8. Jennifer - I do have some plans!

    Clumbsy - I'll let him know that he will have a companion next time!

    Alysha - Hee hee!

    Elisabeth and Courtney - we went to Afton Apple farm. They have a website -

    Quinn - I get my pine nuts from either Trader Joe's or Costco!

  9. Hi, Joe,
    Those strawberries look great!
    Hope Ginny and I get to taste some treats one day!

  10. Hey Gail! It would be my pleasure to bake you guys a selection of goodies to try!

  11. Thanks for sharing where you picked berries Joe. I passed that along to my brother and SIL, hopefully they'll get out there in apple season.

  12. Erika - I hope to head over in the fall for apples too!