The pick-your-own strawberry has few equals, eaten while still sweet and warm from the sunshine. When eating the fruits at home, always let them come up to room temperature – nothing dulls the flavour like the fridge.
These heart-shaped fruits are the only ones that carry their seeds on the outside, and more often than not, they bear over 200. The Romans viewed them as rather a cure-all, believing they alleviated the symptoms of melancholy and fainting, fevers, inflammations, infections, bad breath, kidney stones and diseases of the blood, liver and spleen.
Medieval stone-masons carved strawberries into pillars and altars as a symbol of perfection and righteousness. There are few things so perfect and exquisite as a wild strawberry, always worth snapping up if you see them at a farmer’s market.
In an Eton mess strawberries are an inspired ingredient, while where would Wimbledon be without strawberries and cream? You must go the whole hog too – and make sure the cream is clotted.