I harboured great contempt for the strawberry for a long time. I hated it when people made a big deal about strawberries. Just because they looked pretty (and I agree they do) and seemed a little exotic to India- everyone around me ooh-ed and aah-ed about them. We have such a wonderful array of local tropical fruit- bananas, pineapples, papayas, mangoes- but we still got so high-strung about that damn strawberry. Just because it was pretty. Hmmph.
As a little girl, I was gifted strawberry-scented toys, dolls, pencils, erasers and lip balm. And that clawingly sweet, artificial strawberry smell made me want to hurl once I crossed the age of 9. I would avoid strawberry flavoured ice-cream, biscuits, cake and mousse like the plague.
And then the strawberry itself- it looked great, but most of the damn things I encountered were sour and tasteless. Some were too hard and others too mushy. We went on a school trip to a strawberry farm in Munnar where we were allowed to pluck and eat some. They were like pretty little red bullets; tiny and sour. None of us gathered a second handful! I just didn’t get it- what was all the fuss about?
BUT- I write this post to say that I was wrong. I apologise to the strawberry which I have scorned for so many years. All these years, I’d been just been eating bad strawberries. I recently realised that a really good strawberry is well, pretty darn awesome.
At my mother-in-law’s house I raided the fridge and found a bowl of Australian strawberries (my in-laws live in Qatar and almost all produce is imported). The strawberries were lovely- they were sweet, firm and unlike anything I had tasted back home! I also found a tub of strawberry frozen yoghurt. So I figured- why not?
It was delicious. Icy, tart, sweet and creamy. And gorgeous to look at. Who could be its mortal counterpart? Imagine Hitchcock’s icy blonde Kim Novak as a readhead 🙂