I was going to write today’s post about watermelons, and all the things I love to do with them, when I realized that, as many times as I’ve enjoyed Grilled Honeyed Watermelon Kebobs or Fried Triple Melon and Onion Salad…I don’t ever make them. Not ever. You know what I do with watermelons? I slice them thick, sprinkle a little salt, and eat. That’s it. And I still think it’s the best use for a watermelon.
Ok, my favorite fruit is out. Ooo, how about oranges? I love oranges! Except that oranges are a winter fruit and it’s heading into summer – that means oranges will be expensive and crappy, having to come from another hemisphere and whatnot. Plus, like watermelons, I don’t do anything fancy with them; peel, eat, repeat.
So I deleted a second partially completed post, and wandered around the house. What to write about? What, indeed. To pass the time, I figured I’d prep Fat Hubby’s birthday cake. I was slicing my third strawberry when I face-palmed and ran in here to write about strawberries.
Strawberries are, after maybe watermelons, THE quintessential summer treat. They grow well pretty much everywhere, even here in the desert. Granted, I have to keep them in shady areas once the berries emerge, or they’ll turn into the strawberry equivalent of raisins, but still. And unlike watermelons, I actually do stuff with them! Not like that – get your mind out of the gutter.
Normally, right here I’d go on and on about the ancient history of strawberries, but I think this time I’m just let it go. I don’t think anybody cares for my little mini-history nuggets, and nothing in the strawberry’s history really has any impact on how they’re enjoyed now, so let’s move on to the good stuff – the eating!
I love, and make, all kinds of strawberry stuff – jellies, jams, ice cream, fruit leather, dried slices (which I often them bake into bread or cakes). But if I had to pick my very favorite-est strawberry recipe, it would be…
Strawberry Fat Cake
- 1 lb fresh strawberries, washed, de-crowned, and sliced ¼” thick (an ‘extra sweet’ strain is best, if you can find it)
- ½ cup strawberry-rhubarb preserves
- A pinch of fresh ground black pepper or grains of paradise
- Butter Pound Cake (I like mini-bundts, but a regular sized bundt or slices off a loaf also works)
- Whipped Cream
- Combine the strawberries, preserves, and spices in a medium bowl. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and store overnight in the fridge, stirring every couple of hours while you’re awake.
- Mound all the marinated (macerated? Whatever) strawberries into the center hole of the bundt. If using mini-bundts, divide the strawberries evenly between the cakes.
- Spray a thick ring of whipped cream around the bottom of the cake, then add a swirly cap on top of the strawberries (as tall as you want).
- Try not to eat the whole thing in one sitting. Unless you made minis – then go for it. Keep it under a dozen and you’ll be fine.