|Yay for strawberries and scallops
||[Feb. 18th, 2009|03:25 pm]
I admit it, I'm a berryfiend. Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, gooseberries. Blackberries are the only ones that leave me, meh. |
Although, marry berryfiend to localsnob and I will pretty much ONLY buy them when they are in season in the U.S. Unless it's raspberries crucial to some dessert. I mean, c'mon, odds are they're going to suck AND they're expensive. You don't ship blueberries from Chile on the slowboat. If I'm funding airfare from Chile, it'll be a seat for me, not my blueberries.
Strawberries hold a special place in my heart, mainly because I spent each spring, bent over (stop it, boys) strawberry rows, picking them for 15-25 cents a quart. And I was good. Jersey Belles and Raritans were mostly what was grown on the farm I worked on. And no, there is no better food than a sun-warmed Raritan, freshpicked.
Right now it's strawberry season in Florida. And you're an idiot if you're confronted with berries from Driscoll (California) and any grower in Florida, especially if they're from Plant City and you pick Driscolls. Or any California berry. (Unless you live there, and they haven't travelled cross-country, in which case, you're getting a whole different berry than we east-coasters.
Plant City, FL is strawberry capital of Florida. And while I will take Connecticut-grown Raritan's over a Plant City berry anyday, the reality is...the Raritan's, like your great-grandma, don't travel well.
I know, I know, you picked the Driscoll's/California because they were bigger, redder, prettier. Fool. The Florida berries are more likely to have white nose and shoulders, but that's okay. They may be slightly orange-y, but that's also okay. They may be stubby, more round than conical. They're older varieties...when strawberries were bred as much for flavor and aroma as the ability to travel and be big and red and cone shaped.
Oh, sure, sometimes the Driscoll/California berries are better. But usually...not. Search out the Florida berries!
Oh, and on the scallops front: Simply Enjoy, the Giant brand, has some "meals" in a bag in the freezer section. And unlike the competing brands, they actually have a short list of ingredients, and offer up a less-than-INSANE serving of salt and fat. Last night we had the basil and sun-dried tomato sauced scallops. For a ten minute dish that features frozen scallops...color me impressed!
Could I do better with fresh? Sure. Did I come home last night, fire up the rice cooker, walk the dog, go get the Captain, walk the dog again, feed critters, dump the scallops in a saucepan, give a couple of stirs in between changing into sweats/t-shirt, taking down the laundry, toss up a salad and have dinner on the table with about as much effort as cleaning up the cat puke? Yes. Plus it was WAAAAAAAAY more appetizing then the cat puke.