raspberries

raspberries from our garden

Golden and red raspberries, tumbling off the bush when our fingers touch. Our skin warm. Our hands blushing pink and red. Lovely silence.

We feel lucky to have found this home. There’s a cool quiet in the middle of the afternoon. We have a spacious kitchen, with a gas stove and a bay window where we chop our food for dinner and look out at green. There’s the open space that allows us all to be in one room, separate but together. And we are surrounded by trees.

These days, though, I am grateful for the gardening efforts of our landlords, who planted a bounty around us. This week, the raspberry canes are offering dots of red and vivid orange among the leaves.

We’ve been picking raspberries every morning, Little Bean in her bouncer, singing to herself, as we stand side by side and feed each other berries as we go. And her too, of course. She opens her mouth like a baby bird, wanting more.

They are wonderful raspberries, smaller than commercial berries, mis-shapen at times, pure sweetness. They remind me of longed-for summer vacation. They taste of still afternoons with nothing to do but listen to birds and smell the grass grow hot in the sun. They smell like pie and flavored bubble gum and honeyed perfume.

They are the best raspberries I have ever eaten.

Yesterday, we had friends over for a party. Blue skied day, in the 70s. Who needed to be inside? We lounged on the grass and watched the mass of little kids attack the swing, climb the cherry tree, and descend en masse on the strawberry patch. Reina made a salad from the foraged foods she found in our garden: endive and lettuce, the few remaining red currants, strawberries plucked from beneath the bushes. All garnished with daisies. (Danny added the lemon slice, for her vinaigrette.)

We loved that she relished the garden so much.

But we weren’t sad this morning to go out into the garden and find that she (and the rest of the kids) had left us a few more raspberries at least.

What are you going to do with this summer’s crop of raspberries? We’d love hear your ideas.

44 comments on “raspberries

  1. Allison the Meep

    We’ve been enjoying salads from our garden with fresh arugula and bibb lettuce. Basil, rosemary and cilantro go in everything, and I just pulled a bunch of onions and garlic from the garden yesterday. Soon we’ll have tomatoes and squash. Having a home garden makes me feel so much more connected to the earth.

  2. HannahHandpainted

    We, too, have raspberry bushes in our back yard. We are so lucky. We have a huge crop of petite, sweet strawberries (even though some worms and slugs got a hold of a portion of them), as well as small apples which will be ready a little later, a grape vine with a great bounty in early fall, and even an apricot tree, which hardly ever produces.

    I’ve been making really refreshing coolers out of strawberries, a handful of apple mint from our yard, a squirt of lemon juice, ice, water and a touch of sweetener (usually a bit of sugar, or some agave). Delicious and incredibly refreshing. Like Slurpees for grown-ups.

    I am not sure about the raspberries. I usually let my husband brave the prickly bushes and pick them and give most of them to our 3.5 yr-old. If there are enough of them, I may try to make a pie out of them, or some other treat. Or I may try the cooler using raspberries instead of strawberries.

    In this (unusually) humid weather, the cooler is more appropriate than baked goods…

    XoX,
    Hannah

  3. Amanda on Maui

    I’m curious about the color of your Pyrex bowl. I’ve rarely seen the ones with handles and spouts, but I have a set in blue. The middle sized bowl has the reverse colors of white with blue flowers.

    Vashon Island is quite lovely, although the bf often said it looked like a Stephen King novel in the winter (and it kind of does). He owned a home one block south of Cemetery Rd. just before the Jesus barn.

    The house also had a large mass of raspberry bushes. I’m sad I didn’t get to live there for a while before he sold the house.

    I’m waiting for the blackberries to get ripe up at the family cabin. Although I imagine someone else will get to them before I do. Maybe a day trip is in order just to go blackberry picking.

  4. lizzcorner

    My Grandfather used to grow raspberries. He left us 2 years ago and had to stop tending the raspberries long before that but I remember as a little kid hot humid summers in WI picking raspberries from grandpa’s patch every time I eat them. Maybe one day I will have a chance to grow my own patch of goodness and share them with some small person who will remember them.

  5. La Niña

    Oh Shauna, us, too! Our island raspberries just started getting that dark magenta hue and I picked the first pint this very morning.

    I’m a fool for Raspberry Fool! Yes, it’s somewhat of an artery hardener, but you can’t go wrong. Just take two cups of raspberries and mash them with 2 Tablespoons of sugar. Then whip 2 cups of heavy cream with 1/2 cup sugar. Fold the berries into the whipped cream and you have Fool! It even tastes great if you left some in the fridge overnight, but chances are, there won’t be any left.

  6. Anne

    We don’t have that many raspberries (MUST cut back the brambles which are aiming for total garden domination). I’ve been cooking them with a good couple of handfuls of redcurrants, sieving them, then either thickening with a little arrowroot and sweetening with molasses sugar and using as a sauce over vanilla icecream; or sweetening with agave nectar and mixing with yoghurt before putting the lot in the icecream maker. Fresh and tangy frozen yoghurt. Yum.

  7. Kathy

    We haven’t been able to grow our own, but we have friends that have a huge raspberry patch, and we pick gallons when they are ripe. I like to have raspberries and almonds in my oatmeal in the morning (I freeze them on a cookie sheet so they don’t mush together, and then measure them into snack-sized baggies), and of course, I make raspberry jam, because the store bought stuff just won’t do once you’ve made your own! Wonderful fresh raspberry flavor all year round (and jars of jam make wonderful gifts too).

  8. Emily

    It’s not quite raspberry season here in VT. I’m still enjoying the influx of fresh strawberries. But last year, I made a raspberry hot pepper jam that we enjoyed a lot. My recipe is here.

  9. nm

    fig raspberry tart
    raspberry jam
    raspberry clafoutis
    raspberries on top of ice cream
    raspberries for the freezer

  10. Lora

    Mochiko cake with raspberries. And it’s gluten-free. Melt 2 sticks of butter and add 2 cups of sugar. Stir in a can of evaporated milk. Whisk in 4 eggs. Mix in 1 box Mochiko sweet rice flour, 2t baking powder and 2t vanilla. Add about 12oz raspberries, pour into a lightly greased pan and bake. Yummy!

  11. cottagesweet

    I love raspberries but, can’t get them here in Grenada except frozen. Not the same. Used to eat them by the pints every raspberry season when I lived in the US.

  12. Sarah Caron

    My mother’s house is surrounded by black raspberry bushes … I plan to harvest as many of those as I can — they make a divine black raspberry jam. I am planting a white raspberry bush too, which I am just hopping produces some berries. Our raspberry season isn’t for a few more weeks, so we’ll see. Then we will eat some and freeze some more …

  13. Mama JJ

    Raspberry sauce. Simmer raspberries in water and then strain, reserving the juice. Thicken the juice with sugar and Therm Flo. Use the bright red, tangy sauce to sweeten homemade yogurt, to spoon over raspberry-lemon cakes, to drizzle over vanilla (or chocolate!) ice cream, etc.

  14. sonya

    Great picture. These raspberries look like gems with their incredible colours — delicious, edible jewels. Yum.

  15. Bonnie

    Three Must-Dos for raspberries around these parts:

    Raspberry jam
    Raspberry Vodka
    Raspberry-Rhubarb Pie

  16. beyond

    aahhh raspberries. i get my (expensive!) raspberries at the farmer’s market, so i usually eat mine fresh, one by one.

  17. OUB

    I had my ladies and their babies over for coffee and fresh scones on Sunday. I did my tried-and-true chocolate chip and lemon g-free scones and tried a raspberry vanilla using vanilla sugar and a quart of farmer’s market berries.

    They were good … a few tweaks and they’ll border on fantastic.

  18. Dr. Jean Layton

    do I have to pick just one thing to do with Raspberries? Let’s see Jam, lots of coulis for later in the year, eating out of hand as often as possible, in a salad with poached chicken and sliced almonds.
    Can you tell that raspberries are my favorite fruit?

  19. Sara

    Those raspberries look absolutely delicious. I also have several raspberry bushes in my garden, but they never make it into the house for a recipe. They’re plucked straight off of the bush and directly into my mouth. Or into the mouths of my adorable cousins, who love to help in the garden.

  20. CeliacVeronica

    I have a patch in the back yard that is now 3 years old. It’s just starting to ripen up. We’ll be eating these every which way.

    In two weeks the kids will go camping with dad, they always pick raspberries for me on the way home. With those I will be making raspberry jelly, raspberry syrup (with the bits left over from the jelly) and seedless raspberry jam.

  21. Alta

    that sounds amazing! Wish it was in the 70s here (Dallas). I was just happy to have it below 100 degrees yesterday and today. Around here, strawberries are gone, and we’re full-on into tomato season!

  22. Tania

    yesterday we made raspberry lemonade…fresh raspberries and raw cane sugar smashed together…some lemons juiced…more sugar to the bottom of a large mason jar…filtered water…pour over ice…yum!

  23. Real Food, Real World

    Ohh…those are just painfully gorgeous.

    When our raspberries come along here in New England, I’ll eat as many as I can stand right off the canes. Then I’ll make jam, and use some of it to make a raspberry-balsamic vinegar sauce for grilled meats, crusty bread, and salads.

    I can’t wait.

  24. Sho

    Shauna,

    I just read about raspberries on 5dollardinners.com. She talked about making smoothies, raspberry coffee cake, and baked raspberry oatmeal. Now I am hungry, especially after I thought I could do nothing with raspberries but just eat them as fast as I bought them.

    Shoshannah

  25. Ann

    I’m going to make raspberry vodka, raspberry jam, and raspberry lemonade. When we’re feeling sentimental for my sweetie’s Rhode Island roots, it’s Dell’s lemonade, made with the mix and accented with lemon flesh.

    The pint of raspberry vodka I tucked into the work fridge last summer, to give to someone as a gift? My coworkers demolished it in a week, nearly all snuck in sips. Amazing stuff.

  26. Gemma

    Shauna, your recent posts make me long for a quiet family home with a garden full of good things to eat. One day.

    In terms of raspberries, I’m yet to get over my dislike. However, in the past two years I have learned to enjoy strawberries so I’m hopeful!

  27. Valerina

    What a beautiful blog! You must hear that so often that it has become as casual as someone saying ‘hello’. But really, the pictures and the writing are so…welcoming. The food on your blog is so colourful and healthy, It makes mine look like a vending machine full of twinkies! :)

    Your story is very inspiring and I think it will give people hope. I’ve added you to my blog list and I’ll be excited to see new posts from you pop up on my dashboard!

  28. Ana

    Whatever we don’t eat, I like to freeze so we can have a taste of summer in the cold winter months.

  29. comfybelly.com

    Strawberry coconut ice cream — I’ve been living on it. I posted my favorite recipe for it.

  30. Bea

    Look at those beauties indeed! They make my mouth water! So pretty that it’s a shame to cook with them, right? I would just look at them ;-) and then gulp them down! Well no, a raspberry tiramisu is a great idea. I just made GF ladyfingers this morning to make one ;-)

  31. jennifer

    what a beautiful space you have here. happy to find it. we just found out our 4 year old needs to go gluten/dairy free. thanks for sharing such inspiring choices.

  32. Katya Kosiv

    As a little kid, my mom made me pick raspberries among other things in the garden. I used to despise the task. She was dedicated to freezing the ample amounts of berries and then making fresh compote (no store bought juice for us). At the time, I took it for granted. Why did she have to make it so difficult? Why did we have to be so foreign? Now, I understand and appreciate this working woman’s dedication to what is natural. The upside to picking berries, those delicious golden raspberries in your picture. There is no comparable taste.

  33. Tori

    Yesterday I drove out to Sauvie’s Island west of Portland. We picked huge Toulane Raspberries at the u-pick farm.

    I plan on making Sorbet, Frozen Yogurt and Ice Cream from David Lebovitz and a cobbler for the 4th. The rest will go into jam. 36 pounds of berries go a long way. I never meant to pick that many but I got into an untouched row and couldn’t stop.

    A tip to any u-pickers out there: Go to the last row, no one ever wants to walk that far and the berries are always bigger and there are more of them. We walked by rows that were closer to the barn that were packed with pickers with barely anything while the rows 25 feet farther down the road sat empty.

  34. Rachel

    I am making a gluten free Tres Leches cake today for a 4th of July party. The cake. itself, turned out great. I am on my way to get the 2 milks to pour over it and the cream to top it with. I am gonna top it with not only the whipped cream tho, but fresh blueberries and RASPBERRIES to make it festive for the day. I will post picks on my blog later. I am also not telling anyone it’s gluten free so I will report back how well it’s received.

  35. Alicia

    I made a pie from mine, which I just posted :)
    We’re also making jam, lots of champagne coolers, and some sauces. We’ll see where the rest takes us :)

  36. Shira

    We just went berry picking in upstate NY a few weekends ago and it was so much fun! It was my first time and I loved every minute. We made raspberry, blueberry gluten free muffins with them. So delicious. I recently started a blog and you should definitely check it out, I think you’ll be interested http://www.thehealthymix.wordpress.com
    Thanks for sharing your thoughts :)