Sunday, May 29, 2011

Speaking of Strawberries...

OK.  Another bird photo that I had to show you.  And another dessert.

We started feeding the robins cherries last year.  We threw some cherries out that were kind of turning icky.  We kind of aim for this one corner at the bottom of the deck when we have fruit that is turning bad.  Like, you never know... maybe if we throw something out there with seeds, maybe we'll get a fruit tree or something!  So far, we haven't seen any orange or grapefruit trees... but maybe we'll end up with a compost pile.  You never know.

Anyway, one time we did this, we saw a robin come and fly away with the cherries!  That is when we first discovered robins like fruit.  We've since discovered that house finches like fruit, too.  So, now we purposely put fruit on our picnic table for them.

This year we tried putting out some grapes.  Success!  Robins and finches will eat grapes, too.  It started with some withered grapes.  Now we buy grapes when they're on sale and put them out for the birds whether they're withered or not. 

Experiment specialists that we are, we decided to try strawberries.  We ended up with a batch early in the season that just wasn't particularly very tasty, so we thought we'd see what would happen if we put them on the picnic table for the birds.

Well... strawberries - or at least those strawberries, weren't that appealing to the birds.  The finches didn't want much to do with them until they got sort of dried out.  

But the robin first attacked the strawberries with gusto!  Be glad that you are not a worm!  You would NOT want a robin to peck at you the way they attack what they're eating!

It even chased away another robin and wouldn't let it on the picnic table to get the strawberries when it was there.  Then for some reason, the robin gave up on the strawberries.

I am guessing it didn't find them very tasty.  Or maybe it was able to find some tastier worms somewhere instead.  Imagine.  Worms more tasty than strawberries!

Perhaps we should have the robin taste-test our fruit for us.

Oh - we also discovered that if we put a half-mushy pear on the picnic table, NO birds were interested in it.  It sat on the table all day and, apparently, into the night.  In the morning, though, the pear was gone.  We suspect it was the fox, who we - AND Skippy - have seen on the deck before, often at night.  The fox will also steal bunches of grapes from the birds.

Maybe someday I'll be able to sneak a photo of the fox stealing the food.  Maybe it isn't a fox.  Maybe it's a raccoon.  We might need to get a Wal-Mart parking lot camera for our deck.  But, hey... that might work with our new driveway setup.

Anyway... Here is another idea for using strawberries.  I happened upon it accidentally, and created it using ingredients that I just happened to have on hand.

I'd made a chocolate cake that I was hoping to turn into a torte.  Well, I didn't freeze the cake first because I was in a hurry.  So, it didn't "torte" very well.  I stuck it in the freezer and, for a few days, used it as dessert for Phil and Marge - adding ice cream to bits of it that I'd slice off.

Well, I needed a dessert for one of our Sunday lunches, so decided to make a trifle using what was left of the cake.

This is what it turned out to be:  bits of chocolate cake layered with a combination of strawberry pudding mixed with cheesecake pudding, alternated with layers of leftover chocolate fudge ice cream topping (homemade) and some strawberries that weren't exactly the pick of the season for flavor.  Oh.  Also a lot of Cool Whip.

The dessert did NOT last very long!  Around here on Sundays, you have to move to dessert quickly!  Phil didn't even get much of this dessert that particular Sunday.  He basically got to lick the bowl.


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