Fresh Minnesota strawberries have always been a favorite of mine. As a child on the farm, I spent many hours, nose down, elbows up, with pink stained berry juiced lips, fingertips, and knees in our berry patch helping to fill bowls and my belly with fresh strawberries.
In addition to the threat of ravishment by predators such as hungry children, our berry patch was constantly under surveillance and in immediate peril from the farm’s chickens. I have often wondered why no one ever put a chicken wire fence around the berry patch to keep the chickens out, and have concluded that it was either because of the patch’s large size, it seemed like a lot of work to haul the small roll of chicken wire from the shed all the way across the lawn and find enough sticks to hold it up, it would be an eye sore, or that we all believed that grandma enjoyed chasing chickens with her broom and it was a good source of exercise for her.
Grandma’s broom protected, from friend and fowl alike, a berry patch that produced oodles of strawberries. Many large mixing bowls and gallon ice cream buckets were filled everyday during the height of the season. Berries that were not consumed fresh or used in a dessert became jam or were preserved by canning or freezing.
In addition to our farm producing lots of berries, we also seemed to have a never ending supply of heavy cream and eggs. This recipe for Strawberry Angel Cream Pie calls for only five ingredients, eggs, sugar, cream of tartar, cream and strawberries….which makes it gluten-free.
Strawberry Angel Cream Pie
Preheat oven to 275 degrees.
4 egg whites
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 cup of sugar
In a large stainless steel or glass mixing bowl, beat four egg whites and cream of tartar until frothy. Gradually beat in, a little at a time, one cup of sugar. Continue to beat until very stiff peaks form and meringue is glossy looking. Spread meringue into the bottom and sides of a nine-inch pie pan.
Bake for 60 minutes. Do not remove from oven. Turn the oven off and leave the pie crust in the oven until completely cooled.
2 cups of heavy cream
1/4 cup of powdered sugar
1 cup of mashed fresh strawberries, sweetened to taste
In a medium-sized mixing bowl add two cups whipping cream. With an electric mixer, beat until stiff. Add powdered sugar and mix to combine. Fold mashed fresh strawberries into the whipped cream. Fold gently until the berries and cream are combined. Pour into meringue pie shell and cool in refrigerator until ready to serve.
Fresh strawberries and/ or an additional cup of sweetened whipped cream.
Additional strawberry recipes on this blog:
Praise the Lord, Leukemia and Pass the Strawberries
The memory of picking ripe strawberries and eating them as God intended, right out of the patch and warmed by the sun, was such a pleasant one that I wanted to pass it on to my children. So, every June, when the berries became ripe, we made our annual pilgrimage to one of our local growers to pick fresh strawberries.
Good memories and traditions rarely happen by accident. Someone, at sometime, made a conscious decision to make an effort. Always choose to make that effort for the children in your life. Sharing your time with children is the most important thing that you can give them, in addition to your love.
And, don’t forget to support our local growers!