Thursday, July 18, 2013

Cloudberry


So a cloudberry! I had a confusing beginning with these suckers because it also goes by the name of salmonberry...but salmonberry is also another type of berry that grows around here. Think raspberry without the seeds. James told me he wanted to try salmonberries and I was like, well honey I already found 'em. And then later I was like, well actually no I didn't cuz what I really found was a cloudberry. Haha. That's a terrible and very badly written story, but there is more to tell!

To tell you the truth I totally found these little babies on accident. Buddy and I were just out exploring and we came to this little forest (really close to our house) and I decided we should go walk in it. Well I step into the forest and start sinking! It felt like a foot, but probably was only a couple inches. I had flip flops on so was a little creeped out that I might get eaten alive by, I don't know, an Alaskan forest monster? 

Isn't this story great? And I'm not even done yet! So I look down and see these weird little balls. 



Totally enthralled I tentatively keep walking (hoping to not fall into a bog or get sucked under by quick sand. JK JK) and I see more of them! Well, I say to my dog, or possibly the Alaskan forest monster, Buddy! We need to go home and look these up!

So we did.

And I found out they are a cloudberry.

End of story.

NOT!

The next week we went back (armed with proper shoes, bear spray, bug spray and a basket) and started picking the now ripe cloudberries! Honestly, I'm thinking they got the name cloudberry because they grow on these super soft tufts of moss that feel like clouds. Once I got used to it, it's super fun! So squishy. Basically what I found is a muskeg. A bog like mossy area. They are Ah. Ma. Zing. Weird but amazing. 




Anyhow, cloudberries are really soft, squishy and juicy so you get pretty sticky from picking them. And they are a lot of work. 

See how close to the ground they are? And they only grow one per little bush so you can't exactly plop yourself down and pick a bunch.

I took this picture specifically to show how amazing this place is.
In this small little area there are the cloudberries, a few blueberries,
a type of cranberry and plus you can eat those spruce tree tips. Love it!!!


Now the taste of a cloudberry is very interesting. Honestly I don't know how to describe it. Very fruity. The texture is a little like gloppy jelly. In other words, I don't loooove the taste of them. However, I have full confidence they are going to make amazing fruit leather. So that's my goal with these little gems. Make a whole bunch of fruit leather for the winter! I'm pretty excited about it. I've picked them twice now and have about 6 cups. 


This is how they look when they are ripening.
Covered in their little leaves. Pretty cute. :)

Like I said, alot of work but I just love picking fresh berries out in nature. So I think it's worth it! 


And see??! I have help! Haha. Or not. But he keeps the
bears away. ;)

That's my story for today, folks! I realize it was a bit ridiculous, but sometimes I get in a ridiculous kind of mood...maybe cloudberries have a weird effect on me. :)


Bethany
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Disclaimer:
In order to protect myself from people who might take any information I have written out of context or use it in any way I do not intend...I must say the following: I am NOT a doctor. I take no responsibility for what you do or not do with any information I have written. My opinions and writings should not take the place of a  doctor...consult one of those if you need medical advice. Pretty much...please use common sense and I strongly suggest you do your own research as well. It's empowering!


6 comments:

  1. Wow -- so only one berry per bush? Sounds like a lot of work, but you sure got a good harvest already. Are they about the size of a blueberry? You sure are full of new information -- thanks for filling us in on these.

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    1. They are alot like strawberry plants, actually, cuz they have the whole runner thing going on. The plants are about the size of the strawberry plant. And the berry is the size of a raspberry. Crazy little things!

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  2. I love your writing, Bethany. You have such an interesting way of describing your adventures! Watch your step while out picking these cloudberries. We don't want to lose you to the muskeg!!

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    1. Thanks, Grandma! Glad you're enjoying the stories! :)

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  3. So what did you end up doing with the ones you picked?

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  4. Funny you should ask...I have a post coming about that! :)

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