***This recipe was originally posted on the Good Egg blog in June, 2008.
The kids & I did a little road trip today. We headed down to Oakville to visit with my friend Brenda and her kids. She told me not to bring anything, but I had just finished a productive weekend in my kitchen and I had the perfect little gifts to take with me.
A half litre of frozen Rhubarb Punch mix, a slightly smaller container of Fresh Strawberry Sauce, and a third of a pound of Chive Flower Butter. After enjoying my customary “arrival latte” from Brenda’s incredible coffee machine, we broke out the punch. I suggested that we use club soda with the rhubarb punch mix, as I now think that the ginger ale makes it too sweet for me. Brenda poured our drinks into a couple of wine glasses and we headed outside to watch the kids on the “Diego Slip & Slide”. Vodka would have been really nice, but we are fairly responsible mothers, and we somehow talked each other out of it (very tempting though…)! The punch was delicious; it really hit the perfect balance of sweet and tart (I may have said the same thing about the rhubarb custard pie, but I’m not just saying it because it sounds good!). The thing that I don’t always like about the punch with ginger ale is that it doesn’t provide much in the way of thirst quenching. This version was lovely. I think someone should turn the rhubarb punch mixture into a martini. Let me know if you do!
For dinner, Brenda marinated chicken breast pieces in a mixture of coconut milk, Thai red curry paste, cilantro, etc., and then we grilled them, along with veggies. Very good! After dinner, we finally wised up and sent our little darlings downstairs to watch a movie. Finally, we were able to sit and talk without being constantly interrupted, and Brenda made a pot of Barry’s Irish Tea (I am so glad I thought to give her a box!). Along with tea, we had dessert. She had bought those little individual cakes that you usually see around strawberry season. We each had one of those, with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream, and this fresh strawberry sauce ladled over the top. It was pure strawberry bliss. I said, and Brenda agreed, that the sauce was so much better than having the sliced fresh berries on top (and we all know how good fresh local berries can be)!
This recipe came from my Grandma McDonald, and I remember standing in her kitchen while she was making it. She would freeze it in little margarine containers (although I only remember her ever serving butter) and every now and then, pull out a container for a taste of early summer. The amazing thing about this sauce was that no matter how long it had been frozen for (I’m sure there were limits, as with everything in life), once it was defrosted, it tasted just as fresh as the day those berries were picked.
Fresh Strawberry Sauce
3 c. fresh picked strawberries, washed & hulled
1 c. sugar
1/4 c. lemon juice
A little water, if needed
In a food processor or a blender, place the berries, sugar, and lemon juice. Blend well. Add a little water, if you want to thin the sauce out a little. Place in containers and freeze until needed.
*The recipe that I wrote down straight from my Grandma calls for 1/2 c. water. A line or two down, I wrote a note that I should dry the berries with a paper towel before blending them, as you didn’t want to add extra moisture. The first batch I made on Sunday was with the 1/2 c. of water added. The next batch didn’t have any. I think I would definitely add less, rather than more, but see how it looks to you.