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  • Writer's pictureChef Kelly Unger

Strawberries! The jewel of the season.

To me, strawberries are just pure happiness. It’s spring’s first fruit, one of my favorites and there are so many delicious ways to eat them. Strawberries are high in vitamin C, antioxidants, folate and potassium. Nature knows we need to eat these beauties right now, so let's enjoy them to the max while they are ripe, gorgeous and full of healthy benefits. No grocery store strawberry can compare - in flavor or health - to locally grown, just picked, perfectly ripe berries with no jet lag. 

A quick note on the best way to wash your berries. Fill a large bowl with tepid water and add the tiniest drop of dish soap while filling the bowl. Add your strawberries and swish them around with your hand. They should have enough room to float. Lift the berries out of the bowl with your hands and place in a colander for a final rinse with cool water. Lay them out on a kitchen towel to dry. The dirt will fall to the bottom of that bowl so if you are washing a lot of berries at one time, work in batches and use clean water for each batch. Since the berries grow so close to the ground, they often get very dusty or even muddy if they are harvested after rain. Just rinsing them in a colander won't adequately get the berries clean.  Also, I use the cut off tops to flavor my water for the day. They can also be used to make a simple syrup - there's still life in those tops, especially if you're not super diligent with cutting off as little strawberry with the green leaves.

Since I like to eat strawberries raw, here are some of the ways I enjoy them:

Trifle -  layers of cake, vanilla custard, strawberries

Strawberry Shortcake - I use my Cream Biscuits, split open, then pile on those raw sliced strawberries and freshly whipped cream! The recipe for the biscuits is below (super simple to make)

Salad - with shaved asparagus, radishes and their greens, lettuces, goat cheese, balsamic vinegar and a honey drizzle OR sliced on top of a bed of spinach with a white balsamic vinaigrette 

Strawberries are part of the Rosacea Botanical family. Just for fun here is a list of its relatives: 

Eat strawberries three times a day, until you absolutely can't eat another one. And then, move on to the next best thing the season has to offer (that will be blueberries)!

Kelly's Cream Biscuits

Yields 3-4

1 cup all purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

¼ teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon sugar

 ⅔  cup (5 oz) heavy cream

½ teaspoon vanilla

1 tablespoon melted butter for brushing the tops

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In a small bowl, mix the dry ingredients together with a fork. In a measuring cup, mix the vanilla into the heavy cream. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Turn out onto a floured counter, sprinkle some flour on top. Flatten with your hand and fold the dough over on itself, and flatten down again,  repeat one or two times. Pat the dough into a rectangle about ½ inch thick. Cut into 3 or 4 squares. Brush the tops with butter and bake for 12 to 16 minutes. 


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