Adrienne Gajownik

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Strawberries, eaten many ways.

Growing up in western North Carolina, we would pick strawberries every summer at Ira Cline Farm. Nothing is sweeter than plucking a bright red, plump strawberry off the vine and straight into your mouth. The warm, sweet juice dripping down your chin. Nature's candy. We'd fill buckets full and my mom would make gallons of freezer jam that would last us into the winter.

Strawberry season is ending now in NC, so last weekend we went strawberry picking. We filled a large plastic bucket for $11 in less than 20 minutes. When we got home, I got to work. I roasted them, mashed into a jam, whisked into a glaze, froze for later and ate a handful while doing all of the above.

If you find yourself with a bucket of berries. Here's a few ideas:
Mix into a salad of spinach, goat cheese, and pecans.
Slice and add to plain yogurt and granola for breakfast.
Make a strawberry version of chia jam. It's easy and good for you today.
Muddle into Erin's tarragon smash or this balsamic smash.
Freeze for smoothies or make into popsicles.
Roast them and pile on top of Sara's gluten free almond cake. See below.

Sara's gluten free almond cake
Slightly adapted from The Sprouted Kitchen cookbook
3 eggs
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 c raw honey
3/4 c organic plain yogurt, strained (or greek)
3 tbsp unsalted butter, melted and cooled
2 cups almond meal
1/2 cup all purpose gluten free flour
1/3 c raw cane sugar
1/2 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp sea salt

Preheat the oven to 325. Line the bottom of a 9-inch round cake pan with parchment paper and grease with butter.

Mix the wet ingredients together in large bowl—eggs, extract, honey, yogurt, butter. In another bowl, whisk together the remaining ingredients. Add the wet ingredients into the dry, and mix together well.

Pour into the cake pan and bake for 20-25 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.

Strawberry glaze
1 cup strawberries
3/4 cup plain yogurt
3-5 tbsp powdered sugar

Toss the strawberries and yogurt into a blender until smooth. Pour into a bowl. Whisk in the powdered sugar a tablespoon at a time and mix in furiously. I'm not one to use a lot of powdered sugar, but it helps to thicken the glaze.

Once the cake is cool, top with glaze, roasted strawberries, and sliced almonds. The perfect cake for a picnic.