The Fruits of June in Iowa

What am I?

I am a common fruit that is red,
With many seeds on the outside.

I am often used in a smoothie,
And made into jam and jelly.

 

A STRAWBERRY!  Strawberries are known for their signature aroma, bright red color, juicy texture and sweet taste!  And they are a great source of Vitamin C.   Peak season for strawberries is early summer.  And June is strawberry season In Iowa!

 

When strawberries are ripe, you can pick your own from a local strawberry patch, or purchase them freshly picked.  Either way, they are a very special treat!

 

Don’t wash the strawberries until you’re ready to eat them or use them.  Strawberries are like sponges, ready to soak up all of the water they come in contact with.  Once they have soaked it up, they are quicker to turn to mush and rot even if they’ve been thoroughly patted dry.  By rinsing them as they are going to be eaten, they will taste better and last longer!  If you aren’t planning on using the strawberries within a few days, you should remove the stems, freeze them and add them to smoothies in the future for an extra special treat.  Frozen strawberries are also a fun and very refreshing snack for children on hot summer days!

 

Strawberries are a simple treat all by themselves!  Just wash the strawberry, hold it by the green stem and eat!  No dishes or silverware required.

 

Besides eating strawberries plain or in smoothies, try topping off your pancakes, waffles, oatmeal or cereal with them.  Add them to salads and yogurt.  Try mixing strawberries in with your favorite banana bread recipe for a delicious fruit-based bread!  Children love eating PB&J sandwiches, but instead of using high sugar jam, try using strawberry slices instead.  And instead of bread, try spreading peanut butter and strawberries on a tortilla, and roll it up. The options are endless.

 

 

Below are a few simple summer strawberry recipes your children will love!

Strawberry Smoothie

  • 1 ½ cups frozen strawberries
  • ½ cup low fat yogurt (Greek or regular, vanilla or flavored)
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3 ice cubes

Mix ingredients in a blender and enjoy!

Strawberry Popsicles

  • 2 cups whole strawberries (stems removed)
  • 1 cup milk
  • Sugar to taste

Place all of the ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth.  Taste and add sugar as needed.  If the strawberries are ripe you will need hardly any sugar.  Pour the popsicle mix into a Popsicle mold, insert sticks and freeze.  You can also use paper cups topped with aluminum foil.  To release the popsicles from their mold, submerge the base of the mold in warm water for a minute or two.  The popsicles should slide right out.

 

 

Here are a few jokes to share that I hope will bring a smile:

Q: How do you make a Strawberry shake?
A: Put it into the freezer.

Q: How do you fix a strawberry?
A: With a strawberry patch.

Q: What did the woman say to her dog, Berry, after he ripped up her garden?
A: That’s the final straw berry!

Q: What looks like half a strawberry?
A: The other half.

Enjoy!!

 

Author; Vicki Starks, Fayette County F2ECE Associate

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