We continue with February’s heart-shaped and red theme by observing National Strawberry Day on February 27. These juicy, sweet berries can brighten up any dish and are delicious all on their own.
There are a few different stories behind the origin of the name. The more widely accepted version is that the berries would drop off the leaves and become “strewn” about the plant. Overtime “strewn-berries” became “strawberries”. There was a time (and some gardeners still do this today) when strawberry beds were mulched with straw, insulating the plants over the winter, keeping weeds at bay during the growing season and making them easier to harvest. Another sweet story tells of English children stringing the berries on grass straws and selling the “straw berries” in their neighborhoods.
Not only are they delicious, but they are also fragrant. One of the more aromatic fruits, they belong to the rose family.
Strawberries are grown in nearly every corner of the Earth (if the Earth had corners) except for her most frozen southern and northern reaches. Along with all these possible locations, there are over 600 varieties of strawberries as well.
An excellent source of Vitamin C, strawberries are also a good source of folic acid, potassium and fiber. At 55 calories and zero fat in 1 cup, these sweet things hit the spot when a snack time is calling!
HOW TO OBSERVE
While the best season for strawberries is from late April to August, now might be a good time to scout out strawberry festivals and pick-your-own farms or plan to plant your own strawberry patch. Imagine sitting in your very own patch eating sun-warmed, sweet berries you picked or even grew yourself under clear blue skies.
BERRY PICKING TIPS:
Pick fully ripe berries. Strawberries don’t continue to ripen if picked too early like bananas or pears.
Don’t overfill your container. Berries are tender and can bruise easily.
Don’t wash the fruit until you are ready to eat. Strawberries are susceptible to mold and washing will speed up spoilage.
The best time to pick strawberries is on cool, cloudy days, but if they will be eaten right away, any time is perfect!
If you pick more than you can eat before they spoil, strawberries freeze very well. Pluck off the green caps and toss into a freezer bag. Use for smoothies, ice cream or cake toppings.
You may want to have a fresh bowl of strawberries now, or maybe give one of the following recipes a try:
Use #NationalStrawberryDay to post on social media.
Within our research, we were unable to identify the creator of National Strawberry Day. It is listed as an American Food Holiday.
1. Given all that information on this 🍓National Strawberry Day🍓, do you have a favorite recipe for strawberries? Would you share it with us?
There are some great desserts that use strawberries, but my families favorite way to eat them is to simply cut them and pour on the sugar! They like 'em sweet :)
2. Some people think the smaller, northern varieties are sweeter than the larger berries that grow in the south and in California. What are your thoughts on that?
Hmmm...? I really don't know. I've never taken notice.
3. There is a Strawberry Festivalright here in Plant City, Florida (next town over from Lakeland) and it is a huge event that lasts 11 days with headliner acts each day. Have you ever been to a Strawberry Festival?
Wow, that is a huge festival! Our town has a Strawberry Festival on Memorial Day but I've never been to it.
4. Strawberries are grown in every US state. Have you ever grown them in your garden?
The hubby has planted strawberries in his garden several times but it seems like the bunnies always get to them first!
5. Strawberry is the only fruit that has seeds on the outside, and technically it is not a berry but rather a fruit, and would you be surprised to learn that strawberries belong to the rose family? Do you have any strawberry trivia to share with us?
I don't have any trivia, but I was very surprised to find out that they belong to the rose family! Who knew?!?
6. Tell us something random about your week!!
Completely off the topic of strawberries...I got my routine yearly mammogram yesterday. Prayers would be appreciated that everything comes back normal :)