Have you ever picked your own strawberries? We did a few years ago, and it was one of best field trips we’ve done.
Bradley Kountry Acres, a family owned farm, less than an hour outside of Nashville in Cottonwood, Tennessee is celebrating a lengthy and glorious strawberry season thanks to our early warm spring. I didn’t bother to call ahead and as we were making the hour long drive, I was just hoping they had plenty of strawberries. Once we got there, we immediately knew it was worth the trip. Our baskets were filled in a short time because they had ripe and ready strawberries everywhere we turned.
They are expecting to be open for picking through the first week of June, but do check with them through their site or facebook.
Strawberries are close to the ground grown in patches, but the joy of picking big delicious juicy strawberries that need not a drop of sugar is worth all that bending over. No matter where we looked in these patches, there were strawberries ready to go home with us.
We bought 15 pounds of strawberries, tarragon and sage and flowers and then headed to Cross Plains to a special drug store that has been operating an old fashioned soda fountain since 1930. Thomas Drugs is located next to the Historic Corner Store. Both were special enough to share in the next blog post with a special announcement about a Cross Plains event at the end of the month.
We brought home a lot of strawberries. I froze some of them individually in ice cube trays, and some in mason jars with a technique I talked about here. You can freeze them in jars, just make sure you leave about an inch of space for expansion.
If you live in the Nashville area, you can make it a fun day driving up to Bradley’s, then heading to Cross Plains for an old fashioned soda fountain experience at Thomas Drugs and a stop in at the Historic Corner House for antiques, soaps, food products and more. Both are a real delight, and deserve their own separate post.
Bradley’s has an open house in May (which we plan on attending next year) and is also part of the Portland Strawberry Festival which took place over this past weekend. We missed that too, but we have marked our calendar for future events in the area, including a huge community yard sale that is held over two days in Cross Plains at the end of June.
Healthy Strawberry Pancakes
On Sunday, I made these strawberry pancakes with spelt flour. I didn’t use any oil or butter, substituting apple sauce, for a healthy exchange. My best pancake tip is not to pour any oil in pan, but to merely wipe the pan with oil using a paper towel between each batch, and keep the heat on medium low. This will make for a non-greasy, evenly cooked pancake.
- 1½ cups spelt flour
- 2½ teaspoons baking powder
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- ½ teaspoons salt
- 1 cup milk
- 1 egg
- ¼ cup applesauce
- 1 cup finely diced strawberries
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Mix dry ingredients together.
- Fold in milk, applesauce, egg.
- Add strawberries.
- Heat a cast iron pan or griddle to medium low. Wipe griddle or pan with some grapeseed oil or canola oil. Pour two tablespoons of batter in pan and wait until they bubble up. Turn, cook for about another minute.
- Wipe pan with oiled paper towel between each batch.
- Serve with warmed syrup or yogurt.