One of the most fun outings for kids 'round these parts is Remlinger Farms. I always keep my eye out for the inevitable summer Groupon/Living Social deal for half off, or two for the price of one tickets, as we've made it a tradition to go raspberry picking there every year. Unlike strawberries, raspberries are easier to pick and you can stand while you work instead of crouching on the ground. These are the things I think about with a husband who's 6'4 and small kids that get easily frustrated.
This year we went a bit too early in the season and had to do a bit of hunting up and down the endless aisles of raspberries and lifted up many branches to find the ripest ones. But we still got a good haul. Five pounds for $10 after less than an hour of 'work.'
Then, we spent over two hours seeing the animals and going on all the fun rides that are now just perfect for my five year old. He finally rode the 'roller coaster' this year and we had SO much fun. I think the pedal cars were our favorite though, we went on those twice.
Also, OMG, what a difference 3 years makes...
What to do with all those raspberries? Well, being me, I like to organize them! After rinsing them in batches (in a bowl of water with a dash of vinegar) and drying them gently with paper towels, I spread them out on cookie sheets to freeze, all except for 2-3 cups I keep in the fridge for snacking. Once they're frozen, I divvy them up into 2 cup portions and put them back into the freezer in Ziploc baggies.
We mostly use the frozen stuff for waffle or pancake toppings, and smoothies. My favorite way to make the smoothies is with 2 bananas, about 2 cups of fruit juice (I really like Dole's orange/peach/mango), about 1.5 cups raspberries, a tablespoon of honey and about a half cup of vanilla Greek yogurt. That's usually enough for 3-4 servings. Sometimes I'll add some peaches or if I remember, some ground flax seed.
Mmmmmm, they're tart, creamy and refreshing for breakfasts, lunch or snacks. They'd be good frozen into popsicles, too. Here's some links to my other favorite raspberry recipes to enjoy while they're in season:
Raspberry Buttermilk Cake (Smitten Kitchen)
Raspberry Ricotta Scones (also Smitten Kitchen!)
Peach and Raspberry Crisp (Ina Garten)
Next month: blueberry picking at Mercer Slough!