Strawberry (Fragaria virginiana) a member of the rose family, was the first species to be introduced into Europe soon after 1600 from America. More than a century later, the West Coast Pine Strawberry (F. Chiloensis) was introduced.  Although first seen in Chile, it grows all along the Pacific seaboard of North and South America.

To prepare, wash the strawberries before hulling or removing the stem, so that they do not become water-logged within.  To hull first makes them soggy and leaks out all the water soluble vitamin C, their most important nutrients. Stem may be left on when serving with icing sugar or on cheese platters to be eaten with fingers.  Strawberries can be serve whole, halved or sliced depending upon their use.

Fresh strawberries can be used in many ways, in fruit salads, by themselves with various toppings, desserts such as ices, sherbet, ice creams, mousses, pies and tarts, cakes, frozen desserts, glazes and sauce.  

When supplies are ample, strawberry jam is easily made.  You can also add strawberries to melon balls, fresh fruit cups and fruit salads or float sliced fruits on fruit punches.

Strawberries are superb without dressing but a dusting of sugar, a dash of pepper, a dob of whipped cream, cream with a dash of Amaretto, lifts them to super-great taste.  



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