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Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Poke Salat and Blackberries

A couple days ago when I checked on the closest brier patch, there were thousands of berries, so I decided it was time to make a cobbler or some dumplings. Unfortunately, the birds knew what I was up to and beat me to it. It happens every year, and it's my own fault. So we didn't get many picked today, but that's cool, we'll save these and pick some more tomorrow; I only need 2 cups to make a decent dessert! I gotta tell ya, prepare yourself for some pain and aggravation if you've never picked these before...I still have scars from childhood! But in the end it's so worth it! I'm lazy and I know my limitations-I buy Louisiana brand cobbler mix, and it's the very best...a little free advertising for them there :D But if you want to make it homemade there's plenty of recipes online. When I was young we made dumplings and poured evaporated milk over it before we ate it. That's my very favorite way to have it. But with my cobbler I prefer whipped topping or vanilla ice cream.
Maybe I should add a little hint here....for those who don't know....if you plan on freezing any fresh berries DON'T wash them before freezing. What you'll wind up with then is a bag of BB's. Hard yucky...gross. Take a cookie sheet and spread out whatever berries you want to freeze, just as you picked them, bugs and really, pick those bugs out!! Freeze them like that,individually, then place them in a freezer bag,removing all the air from the bag before sealing.

And now, what about that Poke Salat? Well, you can keep it all for yourself, hehe! Yeah, I've had some many times, when I was little. And I remember EVERY SINGLE TIME my mama made it, she'd tell us how POISON it is...don't touch it yourself...don't eat the berries...they're,have a bite...but it's,eat the green part...and don't forget.. it's'll like it with some bacon...eventually, I just couldn't eat it anymore, no matter how hungry I was.

see the short green bush in the foreground with the fresh unblemished leaves? That's pokeberry before it gets too mature. You don't want it once it gets that purple-y color to the stems and leaves. Mature plants will have berries that have turned black/purple. Don't fool with any of that unless you're an old-timer. Although I know people will eat a berry to cure what ails' em.....not for me,though!

A few years ago I saw someone post a photo of a birdhouse they made from a straw hat, and I just had to have one myself. I collect those old straw hats, there's something about them I love. So I have lots of them and I could make a birdhouse for myself. So I cut a small hole in the crown for the bird to fit through, and found an old butter tub and some waxed raffia. I used an old hole punch and made holes all around the rim of the butter tub, and then "sewed" the butter tub to the hat with the raffia. You can use an old bobby pin or piece of wire as your needle; anything that's gonna fit through the weave of the straw hat. Add a piece for a hanger,too. Here's a photo of when my bird house was new and shiny.

Here's a photo of it 3 years later when a bird finally decided to use it.

Well, I can't seem to be able to upload any photos-anybody know what I'm doing wrong?? I've got a headache now, LOL! So I'm just gonna publish this and hopefully add the photos later......


The Japanese Redneck said...

How neat Kudzu that the bird is building in your hat. You have to really love it when it's finally used for the purpose it was made for.

Our thornless blackberries are coming in right now. The birds have been leaving them alone, I guess cause there are so many wild ones close by.

My chickens love it when I pick them, cause I give them the ugly ones. Their pen is right next to the BB's and they follow me up and down the fence.

Glad you have a family in your hat nest. Good luck with them.


Susan S. said...

Yummmm....I like fresh picked blackberries (we sometimes call them dew berries here in South Texas. Generally they need some extra sugar to make them not so tart! I used to have a ball picking them as a kid. Thanks for the heads up on Poke Salat....I think I'll stay away too!