Friday, March 10, 2017

Food for Thought: U-Pick Central Florida

With the spring weather in Florida amazing right now, I encourage everyone to get outside and visit a local u-pick. Can't do it this weekend? Any weekend will do as it depends upon what produce you want to eat.

 Strawberries? Head to Pappy's in Oviedo. Strawberries are typically available from December to March/April. At Pappy's you can quickly pick ten pounds or a flat of strawberries. You can also pick up local honey or my favorite, strawberry field onions. Bring cash and arrive early. On a weekend they pick out quickly. I like to freeze them. They make for delicious smoothies. I also have made sorbet and haven't tasted anything better than fresh strawberry sorbet.

Blueberries? Although you can pick blueberries at Pappy's in May, I love the Southern Hill Farms experience in Clermont.  With ten varieties of bushes, you can indulge in the all you can eat as you pick. Like the strawberries, I freeze the blueberries.  They both make great ice-cubes in my water and help me sneak in a fruit too. On a weekend, they have music, food, crafts, and hayrides.

Peaches?  Yes--peaches aren't just a Georgia thing. Last May we discovered that Uncle Matt's a producer of organic juices, mostly oranges, has local farms growing peaches.  Again delish! A May thing, but all you can eat. Florida peaches aren't large, but boast the the most gorgeous flesh-sunset. I still have one frozen pack in the freezer. I am thinking about making a peach crisp with it. Though, again I love putting them in my water.  You have to follow them on Facebook to find their picking times as they have a community of local farms rather than one large dedicated farm.

On my u-pick bucket list, finding a place with blackberries.  I do have a secret source where I forage wild blackberries, but would love to pick more to freeze.

What you u-picks do you recommend in your area?

1 comment:

  1. I wish I were in Florida this weekend as I can think of no better way to spend a Saturday than in a strawberry patch!


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