The modern strawberry is a tale of disappointment and delight. I have learned to treat each punnet of really good berries I encounter as a box of fleeting, precious jewels, a treat to be enjoyed with unalloyed pleasure; no cream, sugar or splash of Beaujolais, just the warm berry in all its scarlet glory. That perfect fruit is a rare find, but once you chance upon it life seems, for an instant, to stand still. Eyes closed, you are briefly lost in buttercup meadows, with bees buzzing on the heavy afternoon air. It is then, breathing in their honey-sweet scent, the prickle of their yellow seeds on my lips, that I wish they could always be like this – Nigel Slater.
I have been savouring the delights of my greenhouse strawberries … biting into the soft flesh … still warm … and shiny. Opening the greenhouse door on a sunny morning … the fragrance of the fruits is overpowering.
Strawberries are the angels of the earth, innocent and sweet, with leafy green wings reaching heavenward - Terri Guillemets.
Just two or three is enough … savouring every mouthful … raw and sweet … straight from the plant.
“Nothing speaks of summer so eloquently as a dish of strawberries, eaten warm and richly glowing, straight from the garden.” (Anna Pavord)
There is no comparison with ‘shop-bought’ fruit … after their long journey from the fields … into cold storage … overly large with no delicate undertones of flavour.
Whilst waiting for the outdoor fruits to swell and ripen … this is my little treat to myself because I’m worth it … the harvest isn’t large … but it is enough … and as the rain lashes against the windows … I look at these pictures and am transported to summer … for just a little while.
I don’t want to eat them all the year round … there would be nothing to look forward too … later, when the strawberries in the ground are fruiting … jams and conserves will be made … so that in winter I can open a jar and breathe in the glorious fragrance of summer once more.
The strawberry is a berry that is attached to many positive things through symbolism and folklore. The flowers and berries together symbolize righteousness and spiritual merit in Christian art. The structure of the leaves, being trifoliate, represents the Trinity. Pagan tradition echoes this in that the three leaves are thought to represent the three-fold Earth or Mother Goddess. In Victorian flower language, the berry symbolizes perfection and “sweetness in life and character.” It also represents modesty because the berries are often found under the leaves.
by Kathy Randle
Strawberries are like
The signs of high summer
Luscious, sweet, soft and juicy.
Sounds of plink-plonk
From the tennis courts.
Plates of strawberries and cream,
Delicious mouth-watering dreams.
‘Til next time – enjoy the rest of the week.