Wednesday, June 22, 2011

A Strawberry Feast at Hanson's Farm in Framingham

Just minutes beyond the sprawl of big box stores and chain restaurants is a delightful respite: Hanson's Farm in Framingham. And this past Sunday, my sons and I took advantage of the weather to enjoy warm strawberries fresh from their fields. We crouched in the straw and sought out the "beauties", gorgeous deep red berries. We piled them in our green baskets, glad to finally have the sun and time to pick together. I appreciated that you can drive out to the fields, though a good stroller can get you there as well. There are horses to check out as you enter, Topaz the goat bleating, "Hello" and, if you are lucky, freshly-laid eggs from their Araucana chickens in pale blue. Berries are $2.50 a pound. Hanson's adds $2.00 a picker, but it is free for pickers under 5. Inspired by Hanson's shortcake, I went home to rinse off my now-rose-colored boys, and then I baked. Dorie Greenspan's Baking provided recipes to make a tart and a cake. For the adults (and my food-loving 3 year old), sweet tart dough, covered in pastry cream and topped with lime zest and sliced berries. I also made a simple white cake (Greenspan's "Perfect Party Cake"), to slice with more strawberries. The rest, so delicate, I rinsed, trimmed and froze on cookie sheets for frozen yogurt and ice cream as summer extends. Hanson's Farm, 20 Nixon Road, Framingham

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