Monday, March 18, 2013

Hydroponic Strawberry Picking & Pie

We picked strawberries at a u-pick strawberry farm on Saturday morning. We got there the minute they opened at 9:30 AM...and there was a LINE! They've been picking since February, and on their last picking day, they were picked out in two hours; I could see why once we got there! It was our first time at a hydroponic farm, which was really cool: instead of rows & rows of dirt to dig through, the strawberries are grown in stacks of five levels (no bending over to pick!) in white planters that actually spin, so you can easily get to every side. Genius! They also provided little scissors for us to use to snip the berries instead of just ripping them off the stems - again, genius to preserve the integrity of their plants.





Will's BFF here in Texas and his family came to pick with us, and the kids loved the other activities, too, after picking: tractors, barrel train, dune buggies...




When we got home, I made my favorite simple strawberry pie with part of our TEN POUND(!!!!) haul:
Use whatever crust you want. Honestly, I love the Keebler chocolate crumb crust from the store for this (choc + berries = heaven!) but really, whatever your fave crust is will be fine. The inside:
1 cup crushed berries
3 tbsp. cornstarch
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
In a saucepan, mix sugar and cornstarch. Gradually stir in water and crushed berries, stirring constantly until mixture thickens and boils. Boil and stir one minute. Put aside to cool.
Place whole strawberries (de-stemmed & point-up) all around the inside of the pie crust, & then pour the cooled mixture on top. Chill until set and enjoy!

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