The summer’s here, and the summer means strawberries. There are many ways to use them, apart from the ever-wonderful lusciously red slivers drizzled with cream. They go surprisingly well with pepper, basil, and in salads and savoury dishes, expanding their versatility beyond cakes, desserts and preserves. So I’m sharing a way of maximising the seasonal bounty beyond sweet creations, which also means getting more of this beautiful berry’s nutritional benefits by adding them to more meals.

Strawberries, like all brightly coloured fruit and veg, are high in antioxidants and phytonutrients, including anthocyanins, ellagitannins, flavonols, terpenoids, and phenolic acids, that fight inflammation. Inflammatory states and oxidative stress have been implicated frequently in the development of a number of diseases, from cardiovascular disease to cancer, with strawberries cresting the charts for their variety of beneficial compounds and high levels of vitamin C, folate and manganese.

Besides the obvious jammy scones, why not try an even more indulgent recipe with a scone that uses clotted cream in the scone dough as well as on it, balanced with fresh strawberries instead of jam? As a Cornish lass, not only do we have the benefit of inventing clotted cream, we also have the best strawberries in the world in the Tamar Valley where I am! Wherever you are, give it a go – you won’t be disappointed!


Cornish Clotted Cream Scones with Fresh Strawberries

225g plain flour
40g butter, chilled and cubed
1 large egg, plus an extra yolk for glaze
75g caster sugar
50g clotted cream (preferably Cornish!)
2.5 tsps baking powder
50 mls milk
pinch of salt

Clotted cream and strawberries to serve

Preheat the oven to 200C, and place a baking tray in to heat. Sift the flour, salt and baking powder into a large bowl, then add the butter and rub in until the mixture looks like sand. Add the sugar and combine.

Mix together the egg, milk and clotted cream until well combined, then add to the dry ingredients and quickly form a dough – a knife works well. Don’t over-mix at this point. Turn on to a lightly floured surface and make a round measuring about an inch thick.

Take out the baking tray, line with parchment and place the dough on it. Cut the round into 8 ‘slices’, but don’t cut completely through. Brush with the beaten egg yolk – you could also scatter with demerara sugar for a crunchy crust at this stage if you wish.

Bake for about 15 minutes until risen and burnished, then allow to cool slightly before breaking the slices of scone apart. Serve with a thick layer of clotted cream topped with sliced strawberries.


For the healthier option, get your strawberries every time you have a salad with this simple dressing, combining natural partners strawberries and balsamic vinegar. Chop a few up and add them to a leaf salad too, making this dressing (and the salad) sing even more!


Strawberry Balsamic Dressing (makes around 300 mls)

A sterilised bottle or jar
250g strawberries
200 mls white wine vinegar
75 mls balsamic vinegar
50g sugar (vary according to how sweet you like the dressing)

In a bowl, mash the strawberries well with a potato masher or fork to create a juicy pulp. Heat the vinegars and sugar in a pan, keeping the heat low while the sugar dissolves, and then bringing to the boil. When boiling, pour into the bowl with the strawberries, and set aside to infuse for at least 24 hours. Strain through a sieve, pressing down gently to extract all the juice, leaving the pulp in the sieve. Bottle and enjoy. For stronger flavour, leave for up to 2 days, or for a thicker consistency, simmer after sieving to reduce the volume of liquid. Experiment and have fun!