25 May 2008

Strawberry Fields Forever

Or at least until Eckerts runs out of strawberries!

Eckerts is near and dear to my heart because I started going there with my parents before I even started school. Everytime we went to Grandma's we'd stop at Eckerts on the way and get her the fruit in season(peaches, strawberries, apples, etc.) so she could "put it up"(can it). It is about 15 minutes from our apartment. Over the years they have added a garden center, a Christmas tree cut-your-own-tree farm and a restaurant so that enclosed vegetable/fruit stand of my childhood has really grown. It was Strawberry Festival this weekend and they had carnival rides for the kids, concession stands with good ole fashioned county fair food and of course quarts of strawberries hand picked from their fields. You could pick your own or buy what they picked so we bought 6 quarts.

Which brings me to the question of the day:

How do you de-flower(get rid of the leaves/stems) on your strawberries?

I used to use a tip of a teaspoon as a scoop and scoop them off. Last year I read a tip that you can stick a soda straw through the opposite end of the strawberry and push up and voila-the stem and leaves come off and you have a hole through your strawberry. That was my chosen method for the 3 quarts I was preparing. It was fun. I would think of different people that had hacked me off(first on my list was the rude lady that got in my daughter's face on my last post) and it went from there. I gouged John and Hallie's insurance jerks several times. It was working like a charm.

I announced that I had my first quart done only to be told by Mr. Campbell that he was starting on his THIRD quart.

He was merely taking his fingers to grasp the stem and leaves and pulling them off.

My fingers don't work like that. Besides, what a stress reducer to gore strawberries! There are several people who will be roaming the earth tomorrow extremely sore from where I gouged their sorry butts with my straw!(A girl can dream, can't she?). Works better than sticking pins in a voodoo doll.

BUT, I couldn't let Mr. Campbell get ahead of me, so I threw down my straw and started using his method and had those other 2 quarts done in no time.

Although it wasn't near as satisfying as poking the strawberry.

We came home with strawberries, streusel-covered strawberry pastry for breakfast, apple butter, a carmel walnut apple pie(to DIE for!) and a rhubarb pie(double YUCK!). We will have a piece of pie(or two) and freeze the rest for another time. God bless Craigs LIst for listing that freezer that is now in our basement utility room.

Back to work for me today but the rest of you get out there and enjoy Sunday for butterflies, beat your chest and do a Tarzan yell(except for John--you're still in recovery mode, Mister!) and sing your favorite song loud and proud! It's your day---seize it!


Wonderful World of Weiners said...

You ruin ALL John's fun!! He SOOOOO wanted to pound his chest like Tarzan!


Laura ~Peach~ said...

I will gladly eat your rhubarb pie omg the absolute best is strawberry rhubarb pie with ice cream while the pie is still hot!
I use a paring knife on my tops ...but the straw method sounds fun!
Love n HUGS

Catty Ax Lady said...

Oh my goodness! How on earth could I not have known about the strawberry festival!??! I love eckerts!

And I'm a pincher, sorry. I think if I stuck a straw up the tail end of a strawberry, however gratifying that would be using some mental images, I'd lose too much berry in the process, lol!