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Strawberry Fields Forever

July 7, 2007

strawberryfields.jpg

photo by Harold Davis, a photographer and author who has a marvelous blog on digital photography and other subjects.

I’ve just returned from Florida (about which, more later) and I’ve had a very busy week, so after all that, I’m finally getting back to blogging.

In my perambulations around town this week, I stopped by a local strawberry farm to do the “pick your own” thing.  It was fun.  As in the rest of life, the best and sweetest ones are found hiding away under the leaves.

Returning home with four quarts of achingly ripe, pungently aromatic strawberries on a hot and humid day, I thought that frozen strawberry daiquiris would be an excellent project to undertake.  I hadn’t made them in many years. 

So I dragged out the blender, looked around on the web for some recipes, found a few that sounded good, and came up with this adaptation: 

Frozen Strawberry Daiquiris, the Supervixen Way

6 oz. frozen limeade mix, preferably Minute Maid (not diluted)

3 cups ripe fresh strawberries, washed and hulled

1 cup white Bacardi rum

2 cups crushed ice

2 heaping teaspoons sugar (I use raw “demerara” sugar because it tastes best and it’s what we use around the house – but powdered “confectioners” sugar, used in many daiquiri recipes, will dissolve faster and the cornstarch in it will help to make the drink smoother and more frothy)

Pulse-blend just until ice and strawberries are smoothly commingled and the color is even.  Don’t overblend.  Serve in a stemmed glass, garnished with a thin wedge of lime.  Fills four good-sized Margarita glasses.

The audience for these drinks said that they hit the spot.  The mix brought out perfectly the flavor of fresh, ripe strawberries.  I was requested to make more.  We put a big dent into the four quarts of strawberries.  As it should be.

In previous daiquiri experiments I’d used Rose’s Lime Juice, but that has an unpleasant taste when the proportions are not quite right.  The limeade works very well.

Another note from previous experiments: if you don’t have perfectly ripe, fresh-picked strawberries to work with, it’s best to go with frozen.  We have a problem in this country with fruits and vegetables that LOOK ripe but have no flavor or scent.  It’s like they’re made of wax.  That really pisses me off.  I suppose it would be OK for those poor Dutch painters in the 18th century who wanted a long-lasting model for a still life.

Strawberries are among the worst offenders in this way.  Though they’re more sinned against than sinning.  Anyway, be warned.

That evening we dined on grilled meats and my version of a Greek salad: greens, tomato wedges, kalamata olives, chunks of feta (the best you can find – the run-of-the-mill supermarket stuff is too salty), quartered and sliced cucumber, thinly sliced red onion, slivered yellow or orange bell pepper, copious amounts of chopped-up fresh oregano, and – drumroll for the Secret Ingredient! – big pieces of ripe avocado.  I have found that Farmer Boy Greek Dressing is exquisite over avocado.

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