My soon-to-be sister-in-law, Meg, asked me if I wanted to go strawberry picking on Saturday and I quickly said yes. Westview Orchards isn’t far from my house, so we had a short drive to the farm. We picked up our wax-coated cardboard boxes and were given a ride to the strawberry field. It was hot that morning, but we had fun chatting while searching for bright red berries.
An hour or so later, we had a good amount of berries to weigh in. The guy that drove us back from the strawberry field told us that the early spring this year that was followed by a frost had devastated most of their other crops. They usually have u-pick apples, sweet cherries, tart cherries and peaches, but sadly won’t be able to offer u-pick on any of those this year.
We dropped our strawberries off at the car and went into their market filled with beautiful canned goods, Michigan honey and baked goods including flips (or hand pies). We figured we had enough of a leg workout crouching in the field to deserve a flip. We chose strawberry rhubarb and raspberry and split each one so we both could try. They were sticky and bursting with fresh fruit flavor. The best kind of ending to our fun girly day.
Meg’s wedding and reception are going to be at a nearby barn and we were able to swing by on our back to my house. The huge weathered barn sits on a hill of green grass surrounded by mature trees. It’s going to be lovely.
The amount of strawberries I accumulated made me think of pie right away. I had never made a strawberry pie before and after some internet research discovered that strawberry pies are usually mixed with jello or gelatin because the strawberries create a lot of juice in the pie. I wanted to keep the texture of the cooked fruit as is and went the old-fashioned route with a bit of cornstarch and butter for thickening. The strawberries did create a good amount of declicious juice that I spooned right over each slice. If the juice scares you, you can try a recipe that calls for unflavored gelatin or pectin as a thickening agent.