Strawberry Season

Charlie Monahan was a smart man. For years he trucked his produce into the Farmer’s Market in Boston. He’d sell his truckload in the shadow of Faneuil Hall and then go bad to East Kingston. Then one year he came up with the idea of pick your own strawberries and all the people from Boston would be crowding South road for the opportunity to pick absolutely fresh strawberries. I personally always thought it was akin to working on a chain gang especially when my Dad decided to fill the refrigerator with frozen strawberries and I was nominated to do the picking while Dad wandered around and pretended he wasn’t eating more strawberries than he was putting in his bucket.

That was always in June. June is strawberry season in New England. We’re a little later here where the growing season is about three days long so I had to wait this long for the strawberries to be out. Ripe juicy strawberries with homemade shortcake and whipped cream freshly spun up.

I can still remember how to do it. Grab the stem right above the strawberry and pull with a twist. Then try not to crush the strawberry as you put it in the flat. You had to check for the ones hiding under the leaves. That was hot work my back killed me. Then we’d get home and I’d be expected to crank the handle on the ice cream maker. My brother would manage a few cranks then give it back to me and Katy always hung around to lick up the spills from when I pulled the paddle out to check if it was done. Not that I’d ever be sampling myself. Freshly made strawberry ice cream. Nothing like it. You know the amazing part? They have electric motors on those suckers now!

Mom’s Strawberry Ice Cream

2 pts. strawberries
1 (12 oz.) can evaporated milk
1 can condensed milk
2 eggs, beaten
2 c. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
Milk, just enough

Crush strawberries. Mix well with sugar. Add beaten eggs; then, all other ingredients. Mix well and pour into container. Add enough milk to fill the can. Stir well, then get your son to crank his arm off. Makes 4 quarts.

As a note. My favorite homemade ice cream was banana. You just substituted four or five mushed bananas preferably the black ones that are ultra sweet.

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4 Responses to Strawberry Season

  1. Jenny Beans says:

    I have not had homemade ice cream since I was a girl. We had fresh picked blackberry ice cream and I can still taste it. MMMMMMM

    • chikuba says:

      well go make some! You’ve got a teenager and a man to crank that handle. Loki will clean up if they take free samples before it’s quite done.

  2. Ellen says:

    Monahan’s! 🙂 I remember those back-breaking days too, Joe. Nothing like fresh-picked strawberries. And my mind just segued to the homemade coffee ice cream and root beer my Mom used to make. hmmm Wonder if those recipes still exist? 🙂

  3. Patrick says:

    Picking strawberries.. such fun as a kid. We picked a bunch for jam, my grandma made a metric butt load every summer.. good times.

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