Yeah, Spike Spinach back. Frog Lady says I should write sumthin' about strawberries cuz all the food blogs is oohing and aahing about them these days. Well, she ain't so creative, I guess, but I s'pose I'll have to join the chorus...in my own way.
Yeah, I'm happy to set the record straight on strawberries! Someone asked why they were so hard to grow. I'll tell you why - cuz the berries make it hard! Sheez - talk about prima donnas. They can't grow the same year you plant them - oh no, they have to be planted the year before. AND you have to feed them just right and at just the right time. If they don't like what you serve, they won't make much berries. But, right, you don't find that out til the next year. Talk about holdin' a grudge!
And even though they make you plant them one year early, they don't like to go through the winter, I guess, cuz they demand to be covered! Sheez, talk about mixed messages. So the frog farmers get out the bales of straw and tuck the precious darlings in for the long cold winter. Um, excuse me, that could be avoided by bein' willing to fruit it up the same year you're planted. Oh well, they're kinda dense, I guess. (BTW, spinach is 45 days MAX - seed to table. Just a little comparison there.)
Of course after the berries get all snuggly in the cozy little straw blankets, it finally warms up and they start complainin' again. So the straw comes off and they start showin' off their little white flowers. Big deal. Then we get a cold snap and they're all whiny again. I saw what those frog folks had to do this year -- set up a full irrigation system, (not like they didn't have anything else to do that day) and water those big crybabies for two whole nights. And believe me, nobody else got that special treatment!
So I guess it worked cuz there's a bunch a berries out there. But them berries is still not satisfied. First it was rainy and they gets all sulky and refuse to taste like anything. Then it gets hot and they got huffy and started self-destructin' or sumthin. I mean I watched them pickin' the patch and I swear they was throwin' out as many as they was pickin'. See what I mean about bein' spiteful if things ain't just right? Sheez..
And pickin' looks like no picnic! They look like they is in slo-mo or sumthin' - nobody moves! I didn't have much else to do yesterday so I checked them out - like for five hours crawling down a stupid strawberry row. Come on! (BTW - you could pick five ACRES of spinach in that time. But I don't say nothin'.)
So yeah, strawberries make it hard, but they can get away with it. Specially now cuz I gotta admit, they are finally satisfied with all their demands and they is behavin' mighty tasty.
But I think I might start a Spike Spinach Finishin' School for Finicky Vegetables. Teach these manners around here -- how to go out and get the job done. And it's not just the picky berries. I saw some zucchini get on the market truck. Now there's a clueless veggie if I ever saw one -- talk about wearin' out your welcome! I think I could really set some things straight.
But I don't know if I'll be stickin' around. Me and my buddies don't like it so hot and I only see one more patch of spinach out there. 'Course we don't whine, we don't complain, we don't demand a special bubble over the farm - we just curl up our leaves and bolt!
hasta la vista baby!
p.s. don't let my buddies see me givin' a recipe, but I googled around and came up with a great way to have them berries -- with spinach, of course!
Spinach and Strawberry Salad
2 bunches spinach, rinsed and torn into bite-size pieces
4 cups sliced strawberries
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1/2 cup white sugar
1/4 teaspoon paprika
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1 tablespoon poppy seeds
- In a large bowl, toss together the spinach and strawberries.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the oil, vinegar, sugar, paprika, sesame seeds, and poppy seeds. Pour over the spinach and strawberries, and toss to coat.