Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Goose Berries are Ready!!!

 It is time to get yourselves out to the edges of the timber and pluck those tart little gooseberries from their thorny branches!  These little berries taste like a very sour apple.  When sugar is added for a pie or jam, an all together new flavor is created, but the tartness still takes the spotlight.  If you are one of those kids who loves sour candies, you are going to love these!
Here are a few tips for picking:
1. Wear good gloves.  Something that the thorns won't poke through too badly, and something that isn't too big or baggy.
2. Wear long pants and long sleeve shirt.  This will protect you from bugs, thorns and poison ivy.
3. Take a bucket or basket that won't let the tiny berries fall through.
4. Take a kid with you.  Kids can get down and reach some of the hard to get places.  Plus, kids love being in nature.  My 9 year old kept tasting berries, saying, "this is so relaxing and peaceful! I love this!"
5. Don't be afraid to move the branches around. This is where those gloves come in really handy.  Pull, lift and move the branches out of the way, picking the top and underside of each branch.  Part the bush so that you can pick the berries on the top and bottom of the bush, the inside and the outside.
6. Once you have picked all of the berries, walk around the bush and re-check it from another direction.  I bet you missed some.
7. The green berries are the ones you want for cooking.  The purple or black berries have over ripened.

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