Berries

Haska-What Now?

Raspberries, blueberries, crowberries and cranberries: being on Yukon time means planning your weekends around where to pick once the – dare I say it? – latter part of summer rolls around and hints at fall. There is one berry fairly new to the Yukon scene that is well over and done with by the time …

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Color Me Blue

It struck me a couple days ago that I have gotten out of the habit of baking, and was missing having nibbly bites about for those mid-meal moments that require just a little something. I briefly mentally bemoaned my lack of muffins, before remembering that this is one of the things that I can actually …

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All Tarted Up

I extracted a small tub of raspberries from the freezer yesterday, comforted to see it near overflowing with the season’s harvest. Though saskatoons and blueberries came in in droves this year, the raspberries that made it to the freezer were few and far between – their perishability and spotty cropping this summer made them all …

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Berry Picking

For me, the summer of 2016 has been the best berry year ever. My berry season starts with wild strawberries and they were bigger than ever this year. Wild raspberries are almost always abundant. Our famous Yukon cranberries are looking extremely promising this year. The wild season ends with rosehips. I like to compare Mother …

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Raspberry Jam

I recently discovered a great trick for keeping strawberries fresher for longer: wash them in a one part vinegar to 10-parts water solution, then leave them out to dry before storing them in the fridge. There’s no vinegar aftertaste, and your strawberries will last way longer! I figured this trick would work equally well on …

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Bushmom

What am I doing? It is -45 C and I am starting to feel trapped. I haven’t left the house – unless you count visits to the outhouse or to grab more wood, which at these temperatures are so quick that they hardly bear mentioning. I haven’t left the house in 15 days. I haven’t …

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Kinnikinnick

Kinnikinnick’s Latin name, Arctostaphylos uva-ursi, comes from arctos and ursi meaning bear and staphylos and uva meaning bunch of grapes. Amazing: the taste of those little grapes! I just tried something I had never tried before, but had read about several times. As it happens, I was treating a certain condition I had. I always …

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Raspberry Ultimatum

At the beginning of January I set myself the task, for 2016, of clearing the cupboard of experimental aquavits, infused spirits and liqueurs. A task that was easier set than done, especially when the experimental beverage, put up with such hope and optimism two years before, turns out to be nasty and medicinal-tasting. Such was the …

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Berry Picking in Old Crow

In the past two years the herd of Porcupine Caribou in Old Crow herd has gradually changed its natural migration route.

Bitter Lessons and Sweet Memories

Gin is the quintessential summer spirit, especially for those of us who live above the 49th parallel. Rum, tequila, and bourbon more properly belong to the south, evoking sea and sand and dreamy afternoons under the liveoak tree. Gin, however, was invented in the Northern Hemisphere, first appearing in Holland in the 17th Century and …

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Perennials

In spring, while we wait for the snow to melt, we check on the chives to see if there will be enough for a taste. Once the snow is gone we keep an eye on the rhubarb. This year I was also watching for asparagus to return. Last year I seeded asparagus in a flowerbed …

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To Frost or Not To Frost

With the beauty of the fall colours comes an increase in the ever-present danger of frost. For some, this is evidence of a balance between good and bad, for others it is proof that we can have our cake and eat it too. Ice on the puddles is an indication that a transformation is taking …

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Strawberry Fields Forthcoming

With visions of Strawberry Shortcake, Strawberry Milkshakes — in fact, with strawberries of any shape and size — I got bamboozled into our strawberry escapade on our greenhouse operation. I didn’t know much about growing strawberries, but my husband insisted that they could be grown here, so trustingly I went along with the concept. The …

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Rhubarb and Strawberry Fare

Rhubarb is the earliest crop to be harvested in the Yukon and is now fresh and plentiful. Grab it from your garden or find a friend who has a bunch. Ruby-red or tart-green rhubarb, along with sweet summer strawberries, make this a quick-to-prepare cake that packs a wallop of flavour. Enjoy a slice with a …

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Bottoms-up in the Blueberry Patch

Picking in the blueberry patch; what could be sweeter? Along waterways and creeks, hillsides and rocky patches, these little blue beauties are worth the hike. This upside-down cake is a nice way to celebrate blueberry season in the North. It is also important to reward your pickers with a delectable goody after the pickings. You …

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Cranberries Colour Christmas

The bright-red colour and tart flavour of Yukon cranberries complements Christmas feasts  beautifully. For a change, try baking cranberry sauce ahead of the big day. Adding thyme and some Northern sage imparts a nice woodsy mellowness. Cranberry-Orange Squares are a welcome treat on your cookie tray and make up quickly with the use of a …

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Cooking on the Wild Side of Summer

Wild raspberries are yours for the picking in a ditch or river bank near you. Take advantage of our warm summer weather and gather plump, succulent red raspberries or peach-coloured salmonberries for jam, juice, pie or these delicious squares. Similar to a date square in texture but amped up in flavour, these will be quickly …

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Conserving Cranberries

For the Thanksgiving table, nothing could be finer than Yukon cranberries prepared with the zing of oranges. This is a very simple, very delicious way to celebrate the bounty of our Yukon forest. Conserves are really rather runny jams made with fruit and sugar. Sometimes nuts and dried fruits such as raisins are used. This …

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Cranberries For Health

It’s time to bring fresh flavour into our long winter season! Bursting with colour and flavour, wild cranberries (Vaccinium vitis-idaea), or lingonberries, are one of the most recognized berries in the North. Cranberries can be dried, frozen, or kept in a cool cache over the winter months. Wild cranberries are smaller and more tangy than …

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