A regional treasure. The region’s hallmark, and the reason why each year, in the beginning of July, so many tourists in Pomorskie flock to the small town of Brodnica Górna to join a unique celebration. Ladies and gentlemen, give it up for the delicious Kashubian Strawberry!
-In the ancient times, heart-shaped fruit – such as strawberry – were symbols of the goddess of love. The love goes on, and everyone is waiting impatiently for the first strawberries – says Renata Horczak, owner of Pałac Poraj. – Everyone loves them for their colour, flavour, and aroma. Their many applications could serve as material for more than one cookbook – she says, jokingly.
The most “strawberry” county in Poland, Chmielno in Pomorskie, contains 44% of certified Kashubian Strawberry plantations. They received special EU designations, and they are tended to according to special regulations of the European Commission. Kashubian Strawberry (Honeoye, Senga Sengana, and Elsanta varieties), or Kaszëbskô Malëna in Kashubian, has been registered in November, 2009, as a Protected Geographical Indication in the EU.
-Kashubian Strawberry is unique. Its aroma and deep, red colour remind of the most beautiful time of the year– summer. I have to say that all strawberries that we use in our kitchen have been grown by us. We use only natural fertilisers that, combined with enough sun, yield product that provides an unmistakable experience to the palate – says Dariusz Potrykus, head chef at Nordowi Mol restaurant.
During season, Nordowi Mol restaurant always has a batch of traditional strawberry kompot (non-alcoholic beverage made with fruit and sugar). This year, strawberries will be added to dumplings (pierogi), meringue with strawberries and mascarpone, and as a main dish in strawberry cold soup with semolina.
As experts say, Kashubian Strawberry owes its unique properties to the microclimate in which it is cultivated. Cool nights and warm days are a great preservative. The fruit growth is slowed down, and fructose content is higher. This is why Kashubian Strawberries are so sweet, juicy, firm, and just unbelievably delicious.
Renata Horczak from Pałac Poraj gives more great qualities of Kashubian Strawberry. – Basically, it’s perfect for anything. Starting with prosecco-based cocktail with white chocolate, through cold soup with watermelon, millet pudding with strawberries, and hundreds of different no-bake cheesecakes. An interesting fact: before the war, my grandmother and her mother would puncture each strawberry with a needle, dip it in alcohol, and put in hot simple syrup. The next day, they would slow-fry them, and put into jars after cooling down. They also used white strawberries (also known as pineapple strawberries). They were supposed to be the best for making jams, because of their scent and beautiful, light-pink colour, which was then desired after frying.