Mother Nature has blessed us with her bountiful of beautiful produce. Quintessentially British, it certainly spells long warm summer afternoons sitting on a lawn with good friends and a glass of chilled rose. What more can you ask for? Strawberries and cream please; a large bowl full with lashings of freshly whipped cream, flavoured with vanilla.
For people who love tennis, they will be able to relate to Wimbledon and the mandatory strawberries with cream that they serve, with a glass of chilled champagne of course. As a child, I remember having these little morsels of sweet and juicy pillows, marinated in freshly squeezed orange juice and a sprinkling of icing sugar with, yes yours truly, freshly whipped cream.
Something else I remember whilst growing up is the trips to the fruit farms and being able to pick your on strawberries (other fruits as well as vegetables) handed with the little cardboard box for you to fill them up with your chosen fruits; then off to pay for my bounty, my mouth covered with copious amounts of strawberries that had been scoffed during the transition from plant to mouth. I loved those excursions with my siblings and friends.
Strawberries have huge health benefits, packed with nutrients, vitamin C and antioxidants. When in charge of my kitchens many years back I remember having strawberries on my menu. Flambé, in front of my clients then served with freshly whipped cream and a reduction of balsamic vinegar. Such decadence!
Here are some little tips. Buy unblemished fruit with bright green hulls. Wash and handle them gently and as little as possible to avoid any bruising, remove the hull after washing. Always let the fruit come to room temperature before eating.
Hopefully, when the season starts, about June to August, you will get to your local supermarket. We might just bump into each other…