Local Fare

It’s a banner year for wild Saskatoons and I don’t mean crazy drivers in the city but rather that lovely purplish fruit. I know that not everyone is a Saskatoon fan but we love them at our house. 

I have memories of family outings, in the sunshine of course, with our buckets and our blue fingers. I’m quite sure I also had a purpish tongue as I love eating them off the bush.  We would all pile into the car and go searching for a good picking spot. Which strikes me as a bit odd, now that I am an adult, that there were no bushes on our section of land. 

Where we live now we are fortunate to have several areas that are populated by saskatoon bushes. But this is our first year, since 2007, that we’ve had a good harvest.  It’s obvious that they thrive in hot dry conditions, unlike our hay crop, but I suspect the saturated ground from 7 wet years has helped as well.  

It’s a good thing I’ve had help picking considering what a bumper crop there is. My help comes from a variety of forms though as my regular picking companions only eat the berries. Our two dogs absolutely love saskatoons and are quite comical to watch. You can always tell where they are as the bushes are waving and your can hear them. I’ve also had family and friends join me as it would be a shame not to share the bounty. 

With a crop like this it gives one options about using the berries. If there isn’t many then they get saved for pies or dumplings, company meals of course! If there is enough then you can make jam or muffins. I wanted to try making Saskatoon berry syrup but my first attempt was definitely a failure as the mixture was so thick that straining it or hanging it for the juice was not an option. So what to do with 3 cups of mushed cooked berries?  I combined a few recipes and created a Saskatoon strudel slice. It’s been cooking and cooling while I have been writing and so I think it’s safe to publish that it’s a keeper recipe. Next up is going to be the recipe below which is for Saskatoon Berry sauce. At our recent dessert club I made pie, which seems pretty basic for an event that is all about desserts. According to Ron though, that was the best Saskatoon pie he has had in 27 years.  My cousin and I made a few dozen pies for a family reunion and that Saskatoon pie has been his standard for all these years. So I guess it was good and worthy of a dessert club entry!