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Succulent Strawberry Season

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Somehow, I always manage to miss strawberry picking season. Last year, I took the kids to a strawberry picking farm and, upon noticing there were none on the vines, bought a punnet and raced ahead of them, strategically placing strawberries for them to ‘find’ so that they wouldn’t be disappointed.

Strawberries season in England usually starts at the beginning of May, and lasts until the end of September, though in 2017 strawberries started to appear in February due to an unusually warm climate for the time of year.

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The strawberry is an incredibly versatile fruit, used in baking, salads, smoothies, ice creams, jams and chocolates, as well as being widely used in cosmetics such as lip balm, shampoo and moisturisers. Appreciated as much for its aroma as for its juicy and sweet taste, the strawberry could well be one of the most underestimated fruits on our tables.

When eating strawberries, we not to dwell much on its nutritional value as we lose ourselves in the juicy, saccharine taste, but they are an excellent source of vitamin C, a good source of manganese, and provide several other vitamins and minerals in lesser amounts.

Interesting Fact: Strawberries are the only fruit that wear their seeds on the outside.

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Food Photographer: Tom Davies, Lead, Full Steam Pictures.
Written By: Kate Davies, Media Manager, Full Steam Pictures.

I Scream, You Scream...

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The words ‘ice cream’ invariably conjure up images of slurping up Mr. Whippy’s on the beach, and of children running around the neighbourhood in the summer, clutching pennies as they try to chase down the ice cream van.

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This year, ice cream seems to be growing up! Gone are the days of the humble strawberry, vanilla, and chocolate… as we open our minds to the possibilities of quince, blackberry, and pear.

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It has been predicted that in 2019, ice cream and gelato flavours are going to be pushing boundaries with new flavours such as wild blueberry lavender, mascarpone, and beetroot, with companies such as Hackney Gelato really thinking outside the box with palm sugar, basil and smoke flavours.

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Another growing trend is the increase in interest in alcoholic ice creams. Haagen-Dazs has just introduced a range of boozy ice creams including Stout Chocolate Pretzel Crunch, Irish Cream Brownie, and Bourbon Vanilla Bean Truffle. More locally, Treleavens in Cornwall stocks Vodka Pink Grapefruit ice cream among its other flavours

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Photography by Full Steam Pictures.
Written by Kate Davies, Full Steam Pictures Media Manager

National Doughnut Week

Is there anything more moorish than a doughnut?

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Whenever I step into the Co-Op and grab a bag of jam-filled, sugared doughnuts, I tell myself that they are a special treat for the kids for being good… but I inevitably end up scarfing the whole bag on the way home, and telling myself that the kids aren’t that well-behaved anyway.

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To me, doughnuts are the ultimate comfort food and pick-me-up. As long as I can ignore the fact that they are not particularly good for me, I can wallow in sweet fried heaven with a cup of tea and let the sugar high do its job.

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Doughnuts are a fun food. I remember playing a game with my brother growing up where we had to see how many sugared doughnuts we could eat without licking our lips. I was never very good at that one. My son prefers mini doughnuts, because he likes to try and wear them on his fingers, like rings. My youngest daughter goes for the jam doughnuts because she is a messy little nightmare who loves to cover herself in whatever she is eating, and what better than sticky jam?

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In America, the wide range of doughnuts available is astounding. From the ‘Bear Claw’ to the ‘Old Fashioned Glazed’, doughnuts are taken very seriously. Even small towns are almost guaranteed to have a shop dedicated to selling only doughnuts. Krispy Kreme is practically a  cult.

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Interesting fact: There are 60 million doughnuts consumed in the U.K. each year, compared with 10 billion doughnuts annually in the U.S.A.

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Written by Kate Davies, Full Steam Pictures Media Manager.