5 Delicious Ways to Enjoy Strawberries Now

DSC_0592ecw title2Strawberries are in season here in the mountains. Here at Our MT Nest, we’ve been enjoying them in several ways. Today I’m sharing 5 super easy and extra delicious recipes that feature strawberries as the star ingredient. Bon Appétit!

DSC_0069recipe w 21. This salad is perfect for spring. It’s bright and fresh and works well as a side salad or just add some salmon or diced chicken to make the salad a meal.

Strawberry Spinach Salad

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

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Ingredients:

  • 6 ounces baby spinach
  • 1 cup strawberries, capped and quartered
  • 4 ounces button mushrooms, sliced
  • 4 ounces gorgonzola cheese crumbled
  • 1.4 cup raw pecans, chopped
  • Honey Balsamic Vinaigrette*
  • salt & pepper to taste

*Honey Balsamic Vinaigrette

  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • ½ cup olive oil

 Directions:

  1. Combine spinach, mushrooms, and strawberries.
  2. Whisk together balsamic vinegar and honey. Stream olive oil into vinegar mixture while whisking continuously.
  3. Toss spinach mixture with vinaigrette. Top with gorgonzola and pecans.

(Note: A similar recipe can be found at: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/214901/strawberry-and-spinach-salad-with-honey-balsamic-vinaigrette/)

 

DSC_0146title2. This healthy recipe is what I often have for breakfast during the spring and summer. The secret that makes the smoothie thick is using frozen bananas and strawberries.

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Strawberry Banana Smoothie

  • Servings: 1
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • 1 frozen banana, broken into 4 pieces *
  • 1 cup strawberries, frozen whole **
  • 4 ounces Greek yogurt
  • 6-8 ounces milk (I use lowfat)

 Directions:

  1. Put all ingredients into a blender.
  2. Puree until smooth.
  3. Add additional milk as needed to achieve the desired consistency.

*When bananas become a little over-ripe, I peel them and break them into 4 pieces and put into the freezer on a plate lined with parchment paper. Once the bananas are frozen, they are tossed into a ziploc bag and kept for making smoothies.

**Wash fresh strawberries and remove the caps. Place them on a parchment-lined cookie sheet and place in the freezer. Once they’re frozen, toss them into a ziploc bag for storage.

DSC_0100ecw title3. There’s nothing better than a cool glass of fresh lemonade to quench a warm weather thirst…unless it’s a glass of lemonade enhanced with a little strawberry syrup. Lemons and strawberries are flavor partners that are made for each other. Strawberry simple syrup is easy to make and adds a novel twist to a spring/summer favorite drink.

Strawberry Lemonade

  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

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Ingredients:

  • 1 cup simple syrup
  • 1 cup fresh-squeezed lemon juice
  • cups cold water
  • 1 cup strawberry simple syrup*
  • Lemon slices and fresh sliced strawberries to garnish

*Strawberry Simple Syrup

  • 3 cups chopped strawberries
  • 1 cup sugar
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 cup water

 Directions:

  1. Combine all ingredients for Strawberry Simple Syrup in a saucepan. Mix well.
  2. Heat over medium heat, stirring frequently. Bring to a simmer. Reduce heat.
  3. Simmer 30 minutes.
  4. Remove from burner and strain through a sieve. Set strawberries aside to use in another recipe. Cool syrup.
  5. Pour lemon juice and simple syrup in a pitcher.
  6. Add water to fill pitcher. Stir to mix.
  7. Fill a glass with ice. Add 1-2 teaspoons strawberry syrup. Fill with lemonade.  Float sliced strawberries in glass. Garnish with a lemon slice.

DSC_0097ecw title24. This fruity gelatin salad is a light refreshing salad or dessert for spring and summer meals. My friend, Pat gave me this recipe many years ago. Flavored gelatin is loaded with bananas, strawberries, pineapple, and pecans. The sour cream layer is a tangy counterpoint to the texture and sweetness of the gelatin. This is an ideal fruit salad for a potluck or picnic.

Strawberry Banana Gelatin Salad/Parfait

  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • 1 6-ounce pkg. strawberry or strawberry/banana flavored gelatin mix
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 1 pint fresh or frozen halved strawberries in syrup
  • 1 can crushed pineapple, drained
  • 3 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • Sour cream

 Directions:

  1. Combine mashed bananas, crushed pineapple, and strawberries in a medium mixing bowl. Set aside
  2. Pour contents of gelatin package into a 2-quart mixing bowl. Add 2 cups boiling water. Stir until gelatin is completely dissolved.
  3. Add fruit mixture to gelatin. Add pecans and stir to mix well.
  4. Place half the gelatin mixture into a clear bowl or individual parfait glasses. Refrigerate until gelatin is set.
  5. Spoon a layer of sour cream over the surface of the gelatin mixture.
  6. Pour remaining gelatin mixture on top of sour cream layer. Refrigerate until top layer of gelatin is set. Garnish gelatin parfaits or bowl with an additional dollop of sour cream and a mint sprig or whole strawberry.

 

DSC_0149ecw title5. This strawberry sorbet is a light and refreshing dessert. It’s a little sweet and a little tangy. And it’s bursting with strawberry goodness.

Strawberry Sorbet

  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

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Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 cups chopped fresh strawberries
  • 1/2 cup simple syrup
  • juice of 1/2 lemon

 Directions:

  1. Combine all the ingredients in a blender. Puree until smooth.
  2. Place the blender container in the refrigerator and chill the strawberry puree for at least 30 minutes.
  3. Pour the strawberry puree into an ice cream freezer and follow the freezer directions. Then place the sorbet into the freezer 30 minutes or until ready to serve.

Here’s hoping you have a “berry sweet” weekend.

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6 Responses to 5 Delicious Ways to Enjoy Strawberries Now

  1. My goodness I was happy with the salad and then there was so much more to enjoy as well! 🙂

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  2. I adore strawberries in a salad. I also love them in a smoothie. Another favorite of mine is strawberry cupcakes. I’m looking forward to strawberry season in New England!

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    • carolyn says:

      A few years ago I tried a recipe for strawberry cupcakes. You reminded me of it. I’ll have to dig it out and make some soon. When is your season? Ours is at peak now.

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  3. These all look yummy! I haven’t a clue why, but my husband doesn’t like strawberries 😦 I thought he was the only one in the world who didn’t until one of my girlfriends in Florida told me she can’t stand them or any fruit!! FYI, I’m a fruit and berry lover of all kinds!

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    • carolyn says:

      Oh my! I can’t imagine not eating strawberries. I have to stop myself because if I’m not careful, I’ll eat them all day long. The season is so short so I try to enjoy them often while they’re at their peak and freeze some for later. Unfortunately (or maybe it’s actually fortunately) I don’t have a huge freezer so I am limited in the number I can put up. My three grandchildren L.O.V.E. strawberries, so I try to keep them in the house whenever possible…you know…for the kids (wink, wink).

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