Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Cherry Picking

I have great memories of visiting strawberry farms in Pungo with my best friend and her family.  We picked so many strawberries that when I came home with my haul, my mom had to make jam out of them or else there would be no way of using them all up.

Strawberry picking is done in California too, but it's not as popular as cherry picking!

The great thing about cherry picking is that it is so much easier and require no hunching and crawling around on the ground.  We managed to go at a time of year when there are so many cherries in huge bunches on the trees that you barely even need to move to grab huge handfuls.

Of course, when they are so easy to pick you may end up walking away with 4.3 pounds of them, like I did.  Only $10 though, so it was quite the bargain!

I suppose if you are three years old you may have to stand on your tippy toes to reach the cherries though. Hard labor!

Bridget ate cherries like you would eat a peach.  She would eat all around the pit and bite into it like an apple. Once she so much as saw the pit though, she would send the rejected cherry flying to the ground.  Good thing there were plenty more where that came from!

Babies and fruit picking is a beautiful thing!

So are picnics full of heavenly food.  Natalie made this incredible curry chicken salad that we all (well everyone but Bridget, who recoiled in horror) chowed down on.  Bridget contributed chocolate chip cupcakes while lazy me - I brought a bag of chips and lemonade!

Olle was practicing his serious/studious look for when he starts wearing horn-rimmed glasses.

After our picnic we went berry picking.  Remember how easy I said cherry picking was?  Well there is a phrase called "cherry picking" for a reason - because it is easy - and that phrase does not apply to picking boysenberries.

The farm had olalliberries, loganberries, and boysenberries.  Olallieberries are 2/3 blackberry and 1/3 red raspberry, loganberries are a cross between raspberries and blackberries, and boysenberries are a cross between loganberries, raspberries, and dewberries.  I read this all on the farm's website after we got home.  I could have impressed someone with that information - doh!

I stuck with the boysenberries, mostly because once I figured out how to tell they were ripe, it was easier to master that beast than deal with the other berries.  I was crawling around the ground reaching into thorned bushes to get my berries.  Ugh.  It made me realize why berries are usually so expensive.

But when you do the work yourself, they practically give them away.  I think I paid less than $4 for this huge box-worth.

What do you do with pounds and pounds of fresh fruit?  Bake with it of course!  Natalie and I made brown butter cherry bars and I made individual boysenberry cobblers.  And I still have pounds left!  Better get in the kitchen...

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