By early June on the North Fork of Long Island the strawberry begins to emerge. This first fruit of the spring season reaches it’s harvesting peak towards the end of the month, bursting with strawberry flavor.
To celebrate this strawberry harvest the Mattituck Lions Club is hosting the 59th Annual Strawberry Festival from June 13th - June 16th featuring: live music, over a 100 arts and craft vendors, rides, the crowning of the Strawberry Queen, foods from around the world and of course strawberry delights made a zillion ways. Proceeds from the event help the Mattituck Lions advance their year-round community service efforts.
If you haven't had enough of this sweet celebration, a variety of farms on the North Fork offer Pick-Your-Own strawberries. This can be an overindulgent endeavor; hauling home more than you can ever plop in your mouth—but who cares—especially when you wait all year long for this sweet and luscious fruit to arrive in June. There is a plethora of savory and sweet recipes that you can make with this fruit, so if you find yourself with more strawberries than you can chew, do not sweat it.
Making a Strawberry Rhubarb Compote is an easy way to render down all that luscious goodness for a delicious Greek Yogurt Panna Cotta.
Strawberry Rhubarb Compote
- 3 stalks of rhubarb; cut into 1 inch pieces, 1½ pounds
- Zest of 1 orange and ½ lemon
- Juice of 1 orange
- Juice of ½ lemon
- ½ cup of honey
- 2 quarts of strawberries; cut into quarters, 2 pounds
- pinch of nutmeg
- pinch of sea salt
- In a medium pot combine rhubarb, honey, zest of lemon/orange and orange juice. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and cook for about 5 minutes, until the rhubarb is tender.
- Add the strawberries, nutmeg and sea salt; cook for an additional 5 minutes then remove from heat and chill.
note: can be done a day in advance
Greek Yogurt Panna Cotta
- 2 cups of whole milk greek yogurt
- 1 cup of whole milk
- 1/3 cup of sugar
- 1 vanilla bean and seeds
- 1 gelatin pack
- 2 ½ tablespoons of cold water
- Place the gelatin and cold water in a cup; let stand until softened, for 5 minutes.
- In a small saucepan, bring the milk, sugar, vanilla bean with seeds to a simmer. Turn off the heat and stir in the gelatin until melted.
- Whisk the Greek yogurt in a separate bowl until smooth, then whisk the milk mixture into the yogurt and remove the vanilla bean. Pour the mixture into six 1/2-cup ramekins or Trifle Mini cups. Refrigerate for 3 hours to set.
Place 3 tablespoons of the strawberry rhubarb compote on top of panna cotta and top with a mint leaf for garnish.