Tuesday, August 12, 2008

blackberry memories

During several years of my childhood, my siblings and I would make annual summer visits to our grandparents' home in Washington state. Their backyard was large and mostly reserved for my grandfather's fruit and vegetable garden. There would be daily harvests of strawberries, lettuce, perilla leaves, korean chiles, flat chives.. such bounty! It seemed as if all the plants touched by my grandfather sprang to life full of flavor and color.

As if that weren't enough, just down the street, there were wild blackberry bushes bordering the church playground, begging to be picked! We would walk down with our colorful plastic bowls and fill them to the brim with the warm, sweet berries.

I think of these summers whenever I see blackberries, and the memory is what prompted me to buy a pack of blackberries at Trader Joe's last weekend. Normally I pass, because even when I have tasted samples at my local farmers' market, the flavor is not nearly as sweet or concentrated as I remember. But last weekend, for some reason, I gave in and bought some. I am so glad I did--I ate some out of hand, and they were almost as delicious as the ones in my memory! My brother was coming by for dinner tonight and so I thought it fitting that we make a batch of blackberry banana sorbet from my favorite dessert book. What a delicious end to our meal it was.

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