On the route I drive to take the kids to school there is a pasture where the barbed wire fence is overgrown with dewberry vines. I first noticed this a little more than a month ago, as first bunches of white flowers appeared alongside the fence and road, followed some weeks later by bright red (unripe) berries. Anyone growing up in semi-rural Texas in the '70s or '80s will remember that dewberries were a found treasure, purple-black bursts of tart sweetness that grew everywhere and were free for the taking. As a child, I remember going out into bramble-filled pastures with my grandmother (and presumably the rest of the family as well) filling up buckets with dewberries while getting scratched up by those nasty little thorns. We always wore boots and carried long sticks because of the potential for snakes. Both of my grandmothers would bake dewberry pies that were magnificent. I cannot remember them ever baking any other kind of pie--well, maybe lemon meringue, but as I didn't like lemon meringue, that doesn't count. The tart/sweet balance was fantastic, and I would eat as much of those pies as I could get away with. One grandmother always baked them with a crust lattice on top, the other baked them open-faced. I didn't care--I ate both types without prejudice. The one thing I didn't like was the crunchiness of the seeds that filled said pies. What can I say? I could be dumb as a kid.
Chicken Ranch Central