Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Berries Galore!

Tasty Tuesday comes to the Flyball Dogs group with nature's abundance of berries this summer!

Kol's Notes
I have been making trips to the park, where I pick blackberries for free, a few times per week. Pallo always helps out, though he eats all the berries he picks himself. I have almost two gallons of blackberries in the freezer right now (even after eating tons of them every day). The park has tons of the Himalayan Blackberries, which are large and juicy. These are the kind most commonly found in stores. But, for those of you who don't know this, Himalayan blackberries in Oregon are a major weed problem. We spend hours and days every year fighting them back out of our yards, and they have nearly wiped out the native wild roses.


Here is my recipe:
Pick lots of blackberries. Eat lots while picking.

To serve: Grab a handful, put in mouth.

To serve as a dog treat: Hand berry to dog. More entertaining, teach dog to pick own berries.

Alternative way to enjoy: Freeze berries, then use in cereal in the morning, or just enjoy with milk (or half and half/cream for a richer taste). Dogs even enjoy the frozen berries as a great cool treat on hot days.


Pallo with one day's haul of blackberries at the park:


On my Sunday trip to Mt Hebo I spent some time picking other wild berries. My dad is just as crazy about wild berries as I am, so when we saw tons of ripe thimble berries as we were driving up the mountain, it was a no-brainer to stop and pick some. Thimble berries don't travel well though, so they are a pick-and-enjoy kind of a fruit. We also picked red huckleberries, which were super prolific this year. I picked some to bring home, even.

Then we hit a jackpot of a blue huckleberry bush, which are not nearly as common as the reds. We picked and picked and picked and finally had to get going, because we could have spent all day there in the woods picking berries.

We also looked for mushrooms while out there, but while we found a few lobster mushrooms, most of what we found was evidence of illegal picking crews coming through, picking all the mushrooms there, and discarding and destroying the ones not pretty enough to sell in stores. Man I hate those crews. We found the place where they must have been washing them in the stream, and found probably 10 pounds of mushrooms crushed and crumbled along the stream, totally wasted, alongside fresh beer cans tossed in the same area, likely by the same idiot pickers.

Anyhow, we then headed up to the top of the mountain. I did my hiding for the search dogs, then we spent time in a huge meadow. I picked wild strawberries (which are teeny tiny and have the best flavor ever), eating most and putting some in the bucket to bring home. I also found wild trailing blackberries. These are murder to have in fields, they crawl along the ground, looped just high enough to catch your ankles and cut you open like razor wire. But man, their berries are the most delicious of any kind of blackberry ever. Not many were ripe (strawberries and blackberries aren't normally ripe together at all), but I got some to add to my wild berry medley, which I brought home, froze, and plan on eating mid-winter on some crepes.

While in the meadow, I had to (of course) take some pictures of the dogs.

This is my new favorite picture of my pups:


Koira thought it was a really hot day, and that shadows taste good for lunch:


Even though this picture is focused on the grass and flowers instead of the dog, I am really liking it. I should almost just say I did it like that on purpose...


Pallo was all squinty all day because of how bright the sun was, and spent a lot of time mouthing random plants (which is how he has gotten sharp grass seeds jammed into the inside of his lips before, requiring antibiotics):


Don't forget to leave a comment to enter in the giveaway for a coursing slip or a bungee leash!

And, because I have received a few comments about this, to find coursing in your area: Using a search engine, good words to use are sighthounds, coursing, lure coursing, gazehounds. All of these will help you locate a club in your area. If that club doesn't offer the CAT, they will likely be able to direct you to the other clubs in the area, or know who or where the CAT is offered locally.

9 comments:

Sugar the Golden Retriever said...

Woof! Woof! Happy Tasty Tuesday!!! Oh I LOVE Blueberries. LOVE your photos ... so cute! Golden Thanks for joining our Tasty Tuesday Blog Hop. Lots of Golden Woof,s Sugar

akgphoto said...

You sound like me with the wild berries. I picked and froze upwards of 14 cups of wineberries this year. We unfortunately don't have as many wild berries as you do. Enjoy!
Anna
www.akginspiration.com

Debby and Kirby said...

Your pictures are stunning!

We have some blueberry bushes so we always have a freezer full. I use them in everything - human and canine!

Your "recipe" does seem the easiest one yet!

browndogcbr said...

Hi Y'all,

We love the Huckleberries. Hawk eating the berries is a major problem because of his food allergies. Sometimes he gets to them when I'm not paying attention and am slow recalling him.

Love the photos in the grass. Very cool.

Y'all come by now,
BrownDog's Human

Veronica Lodge said...

These pics just show how much you guys loved the berries!

yuki the dog said...

That's so cool you know which berries are what out in the wild. I'm such an indoorsy girl I'd probably pick the poison berries thinking it was a blueberry or something. :)

Greyhounds CAN Sit said...

I've never heard of most of those berries! We just get the normal here and the only thing I know in the 'wild' is blackberries. That sounds like the best day out and the photos are wonderful! Great to bring home all those berries to freeze too:)

Tessa99999 said...

Wow I'm pretty jealous! We mostly have Blackberries around here and they are delicious. I've made quite a few blackberry cobblers which are awesome! Addie loves blackberries too, but she is too much of a wuss to pick her own. So she annoys me until I pick some and give her a few bites. =P

Kolchak Puggle said...

Yum, those berries look delicious! It must be neat to live somewhere you can eat then local mushrooms. Here? You run the risk of illness, or at least a psychedelic trip ;0)