Summer Has Arrived…Time to Freeze!

Raspberries (Rubus Idaeus).

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Summer has arrived! How do I know?

Here in the Northwest it certainly is not the warm/hot weather. In fact, it is gray, overcast and trying to rain but just not quite making it! But, the days are longer and the wild and tame berries are definitely waking up and blooming!

The tame strawberries are blooming and even producing a few bright red sweet berries to announce summer! There are many more berries to come as the early summer days get warmer.

Next will be the raspberries. They ‘re just setting now, with the aid of the bumble bees. I never realized there were so many bumble bees. We seldom see any except when the raspberries are blooming, Where do they come from and where do they go? They just seem to appear!

Thimble berries are blooming and will soon be ready to eat. Like the tame strawberry, they are the first wild berry to ripen!

From then on we will be busy picking  and eating wild black berries from our favorite spots to freeze and to enjoy next winter and early spring.

It is possible to dry strawberries and blueberries but I personally prefer frozen ones. The dried berries can be eaten out of hand or can be added to cookie, muffin or cake dough without reconstituting them. Refreshed dried blueberries and strawberries can be made into a sauce by processing them in a blender for a quick blending. Great on ice cream or in apple sauce for a change or in ice cream for a different flavor.

Blend with bananas or frozen, or dried reconstituted peaches or nectarines, to a sauce and use on waffles or pancakes! You can add a little lemon juice or cinnamon or other spices if your family wishes!

Here are a couple more recipes.    How about a…

BERRY FLUFF

Sounds yummy to me! It is my kind of recipe. You can very easily  make a number of other flavors. Delicious and simple!

Beat 2 egg whites with 1 tablespoon lemon juice  Gradually beat in 1 1/3 cup sugar and berries . (Personally I cut back on the sugar)

Beat for 12 to 15 minutes until mixture has high volume.

Fold in 1 cup heavy cream, whipped. Pour in 9 inch square pan or 7 inch round pan and freeze.

Use peaces, nectarines or any other fruit in place of berries. My mother used very ripe, but still very good apricots in a dessert similar to this.

If you want a crust use 1 1/4 cup cookie crumbs and 1/3 cup butter in bottom of pan. Bake at 350  for 8 minutes. Cool before filling.

RASPBERRY SWIRL

Separate 3 eggs. Beat the yolks until thick. Add 8 oz (bought or home made) cream cheese, 1 cup sugar and 1/8 teaspoon or pinch of salt. Beat until smooth.

In a separate bowl beat egg whites until stiff peaks are formed. Fold the whites and cream cheese mixtures. Pour half this mixture into pan. Top with half the

crush fruit, pour about half on top and swirl through mixture. Pour the other half of mixture and top with rest of crushed fruit. Swirl with knife. Freeze . Cover.

Enjoy summer with all it’s bountiful fruits!

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