In Southern California, the arrival of Spring marks the beginning of fabulous fruit season and gorgeous ruby red strawberries kick off the season in juicy style! I was absolutely delighted when The California Strawberry Commission invited me and my family to spend the day out in their Strawberry Fields in Oxnard and immerse ourselves in all things strawberries!
Upon arrival, we were whisked away (rustic style) on a tractor into the strawberry fields
We immediately jumped into the fields and started picking the most vibrant, fresh, ruby red berries
Have you ever tried farm fresh picked Strawberries? I highly rec it, they are nothing short of spectacular especially when they are at peak season. And my little man just couldn’t resist . . . . .
He got a little bit excited after tasting those delicious fresh strawberries 🙂
Next we had the chance to explore the fields and meet local and passionate Strawberry farmer Bill Reiman (a 5th generation Ventura County farmer BTW) who really educated us about the specifics of strawberry farming. He showed us what healthy/unhealthy strawberry roots look like (not black) and candidly told us that this years crop was not up to his high standards (to me they were yummy BTW) because of the extreme fluctuating temps in SoCal this growing season.
Then we took a short ride to the rather chilly strawberry cooler, to see where they store and how they pack the strawberries before they are shipped to stores across the country.
After all of our touring was complete, we sat down to a divine strawberry inspired meal prepared by local Chef Tim Kilcoyne of The Sidecar Restaurant
Here’s a glimpse of our tasty menu which included:
- Bruschetta with Fava Bean Ricotta, house made Strawberry Mustard (My Favorite Dish of the day = YUM!)
- Braised Chicken Enchiladas with Swiss chard, roasted strawberry mole and queso fresco. Served with a black bean and quinoa salad
- Chocolate Genoise with strawberry mousse, ganache and a white chocolate dipped strawberry
- Strawberry Basil Meyer Lemonade (my little man was a fan!)
After our bellies were full of all things berries, we got some goodies to take home including a gorgeous flat of fresh picked strawberries. We had an AMAZING day in the Strawberry Fields, but picking strawberries and eating delicious food can sure be exhausting 🙂
In honor of Strawberry Season, I wanted to host a fun GIVEAWAY on behalf of the California Strawberry Commission and bring a little bit of berry goodness to my readers, so I am giving away THREE sets of the following prizes to 3 lucky winners:
Here are the details of this Festive Strawberry Inspired Giveaway:
- 3 Sets of the Following Strawberry Themed Goodies: ONE (1) Copco Strawberry Tea Kettle with a Harmonic Whistle and ONE (1) Set of Strawberry Flour Sack Dish Towels – 3 WINNERS
- How to Enter: Please use the Rafflecopter Widget below for your entries. You can enter daily through tweeting & posting a comment on this blog post
- Restrictions: Must be 18+, a US resident and have a US Mailing Address
- Contest Dates: 5/15/13 to 5/30/13 at 12 am EST
Disclosure: The California Strawberry Commission invited me and my family to enjoy a fabulous day of all things berries and they compensated me to write this post/giveaway. However, all opinions and berry insights are my own.