Farm Fresh Strawberries . . . YUM!!

I picked up an obelisk planter a couple of years ago with the intention of planting hanging strawberries.  It is now in place and filled with plants I transferred from our previous house.Strawberry Tower & Patch  I doubt I’ll get any berries this year, so I was excited to see the ad in our local paper for berries picked per order.

The farmer’s son had just finished picking for the day so I was able to get a flat (6 quarts) of sweet juicy strawberries that afternoon.  A few didn’t make it home . . . a person gets hungry on those four mile drives! 🙂

The next morning I set out to freeze my berries.Processing fresh berries 1  My mother and grandmother would make jam out of half of the berries they collected during the season, the rest would be cut up and froze with a bit of sugar added.  I prefer the same method I use for blueberries, which is to freeze them whole without sugar.

Washed, cored, and run through the salad/berry spinner to get rid of excess moister, the berries are spread onto a cookie sheet for a trip to the freezer.Processing fresh berries 2

Once they’ve hardened (takes about three hours) it’s time to bag them up.  I prefer this method since it allows me to take out the number of berries I need without thawing an entire bag.Processing fresh berries 3

My dear friend Kathy turned me onto this handy little bag holder.  It has a suction cup on the bottom and easily adjusts for gallon size bags.  Processing fresh berries 4

Five quarts out of six for the freezer.Processing fresh berries 5 Half of that sixth quart is still in the fridge, I doubt it will last the day.  The other half . . . well a person gets hungry processing berries!  I think I’ll be making another call to our local farmer.  Although that can wait until tomorrow.

For now, I think I’ll take a break in our newly assembled screen house and ponder what to plant next in the kitchen garden.Patio Screen House