Raspberries, ad libitum.
Simple recipe: Go out into the back yard, where wild raspberries have taken over segments, and look for brilliantly-red fruits. Pluck and eat. If you don’t bring them into the house, you don’t have to wash them. It’s like the five-second rule we hear about: food that lands on the floor has five seconds to be retrieved before you have to wash or re-wash it, or so it is said…
I now have canning equipment. I’m thinking of canning tomatoes and pickles. Do I think of canning raspberries?
No. To do so will mean adulterating them. Jam? Jelly? Raspberries are best fresh off the vine. Wild and free, brought in no doubt by birds, and truly organic (for at least 20 years I can vouch that particular region of my yard has never seen a pesticide), even if not legally so (no can do paperwork, eh)? Why would I want to ruin their nutritious internal delicacy by rendering them down? Wild raspberries are as my family has known for at least a generation or two, more flavorful than any other variety, whether home-grown or not.
IF I had Mom’s raspberry cobbler recipe, I’d try that, but I don’t have that, and I don’t want anything that will fall short of memory. Yesterday I went so totally off my regular nutrition plan that I made a planned allowance for a Scottish Bridie at a Scottish festival I attended. Lots of carbs in a phyllo-like pastry, accompanied by no-doubt-factory-farmed ground beef and seasonings inside. Three years ago I last had one here at the same festival from the same vendor, and I felt old childhood “comfort food” resonances singing in my bones. We’d grown up with three summers in the north of Scotland. For some people, comfort food is chicken pot pie, or (ugh) meatloaf. For me it is, or was, at least in part, a good Scottish Bridie.
Honestly, the pastry part didn’t disappoint, even if it didn’t send me over any gustatory edge of expectation, as in the past. The meat: Disappointed big time. It’s meal-y and industrial, and just totally WRONG. Did the vendor change their recipe in the past three years since I’d been up here? Or have I changed my tastes? I know i cannot eat the from-a-carton-egg omelette they serve at work any longer. Rubber-texture is just so not a food group. But once, I used to eat that, and not really notice.
The more I get into real food: the happier my taste buds, it appears. Even if this means leaving old memories behind. I wonder what I’d make of Mom’s raspberry cobbler today, if it should somehow appear as a tangible apparition on my table tonight. I suspect I’d still love it, but find it sweeter than I remember.
But, wild raspberries. A comfort food since childhood vacations in Maine. And it remains a comfort, despite, and maybe because of, my other gustatory changes.
Comfort food: Wild raspberries, unhindered by additional sugars or pectins, unhindered by washing, straight from the vine, and into my mouth. I love you vine-y wild guys, and I’m going outside for MORE, but please, please, don’t commandeer any more of my back yard!