Ah yes – May is National Strawberry month. Here in the Carolinas we get
lots of luscious strawberries – a deliciously welcome change from the
sometimes partially white and tasteless things that are the winter offerings in the supermarkets.
Some of the most wonderful, hugest strawberries I ever had were the daily fare in restaurants and hostelries in France and Italy in the spring. I think the deliciousness of them was akin to the deliciousness of hot dogs at the ball park: location, location, location. But the best tasting strawberries ever, big or small, were right outside our door when we lived in upstate New York – that is when we could beat the beasties, the chipmunks, squirrels and birds, to them. I didn’t plant them: they came, along with my favorite Johnny-jump-ups, from God. They came in on the wind - or as a ‘gift’ from those same beasties - and planted themselves here and there in the garden. When they began to ripen I’d get out there early in the morning and harvest a handful. No bigger than maybe a baby lima bean, they were absolutely delicious on our cereal in the morning. I had better luck with the wild strawberries than I had with the wild blueberries or hazelnuts. Those grew in the woods further from the house. I’d see that they were almost ready to pick, but when I remembered to get back to them they were gone! I do believe the vigilant beasties deserved them more than I did.
Tomorrow the Fresh Produce Club has its Market Day here in Sun City Carolina Lakes. I’ll be taking my empty quart boxes back to refill for this week’s supply of local strawberries. I’ll be so sad when strawberry season is over – but the fresh peaches will soon follow.