Strawberries are the irresistible taste of spring. They’re juicy, refreshing, great for pies, excellent for picnics, and perfectly in season.

Strawberries aren’t truly berries, because of their seeds that are on the outside. An average strawberry has approximately 200 seeds. If you don’t want the seeds on your strawberries, you can gently peel off the outside with a paring knife.

Strawberries are known for sweet jams and tarts, but they are an excellent base for savory recipes as well, like spicy salsas, glazes for meats, and endless fresh green combinations in strawberry salads.

Ounce for ounce, strawberries have more vitamin C than an orange. They are also full of antioxidants. Consuming a serving a day (about 1 cup of sliced strawberries) will even boost your immune system. These same qualities make strawberries a great exfoliating face mask. Just mash 9 strawberries, mix in 2 tablespoons of honey, and apply over your face (avoid your eyes). Wash away the mask after 10 minutes and your skin will shine.

It’s so disappointing to buy strawberries and they end up having no flavor. Here are ways that you can tell if you’re buying the best strawberries.

The Smell Test! Strawberries that are ready for eating have a sweet, delicious scent.

Color Check! Look for a bright red color. That’s the best indication of flavor. A strawberry with too much white was not picked in its prime.

Bottoms Up! Most of the strawberries are hidden in the box interior. Check the bottom of the box will let you see if there are small pools of juice leaking and if any strawberries have been squashed.

After you’ve brought home your delicious strawberries make sure to keep them dry. Don’t wash them until just before you’re ready to use them. This will keep them lasting longer.

When hulling strawberries you may want to give this trick a try. Instead of chopping off the whole leafy top of a strawberry, poke a drinking straw into the bottom of the strawberry and push it all the way through to the other side, until the top pops off, or use a paring knife or teaspoon to scoop out just the green.

“Work With What You Got!”

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2017 All Rights Reserved

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