Australians love ‘big’ things: the Big Banana, the Big Pineapple, the Big Merino… One to visit is the lesser known Big Strawberry close to the Victorian-New South Wales border. One to head to if you like berry, berry delicious things…
The Big Strawberry is a strawberry farm, producer and café located in Koonoomoo, Victoria (just 9km from Cobram). Established in 1984, not only does this establishment offer beautiful fresh strawberries- it lets you pick your own; strawberries are available to pick from April-July and from October-January but are available to purchase all year round.
When we visited there during January, we were able to buy strawberries at an amazing $2.50 for a punnet. There was also other affordable seasonal produce such as peaches and nectarines available.
The Big Strawberry also offers an extensive range of strawberry-based products including jams, condiments, sauces, toppings, wines and liqueurs- not to mention an extensive menu at their café (the strawberry ice cream was delicious!).
Strawberries are a source of Vitamin C, dietary fibre, manganese, folate and potassium. Their sweet and slightly acidic flavours makes them a perfect complement for desserts and surprisingly, many tomato-based dishes. It can be found in many markets and supermarkets, and are predominantly grown in Victoria and Queensland. The fantastic thing about strawberries in Australia is that you should be able buy them 12 months of the year- the different climatic regions around the country means that they are generally available all year round. To select great strawberries look for:
- Bright, vibrantly-coloured red berries (strawberries do not continue to ripen after they have been picked, unlike other fruits such as bananas)
- Berries with the leafy top attached, green and looking fresh
- No juice or mould on the bottom layer
You can find my recipe for Strawberry Pancakes in the ‘Cook” section here.