Sweets of Spring

Flowers are blooming, birds are chirping, and produce sections at markets all over town seem to be getting more and more colorful with each passing day. Spring has most definitely arrived here in San Diego and nothing says spring to me quite like strawberries. Here at Specialty Produce we offer an array of different strawberry varieties throughout the season to meet all of your berry needs.


Right now we are loving all of the strawberries from our local California farms which are a perfectly sweet snack on their own, make a simple yet elegant dessert when topped with a bit of fresh cream, and are scrumptious when enjoyed with Humboldt fog goat cheese.  From simple preparation to complex recipes there are so many different ways to enjoy this delicious springtime fruit, here are a couple sweet strawberry recipes I have been enjoying the past few weeks.

Chocolate Strawberry Oatmeal

Serves 2

strawberry oatmeal


1 cup oats
1¾ cup milk (soy or moo cow, you can also substitute water for some or all of the milk if you are watching your calories)
1 teaspoon vanilla flavoring
1 teaspoon cocoa powder
1 cup strawberries, cut into bite sized pieces
15 or so chocolate chips


Bring the milk, water (if using), and oats to a light boil then reduce heat to a low simmer and add your vanilla flavoring and cocoa powder. After 5 minutes of cooking or when most of the liquid has absorbed from the oatmeal, reduce heat to low and add the strawberries. Stir gently to combine, let sit for a minute just to heat the strawberries through a smidge and then portion oats into two bowls and top with chocolate chips.

Berry Sweet Cupcakes

frosted cupcakes

This recipe makes 12 cupcakes but you can always double the batter if you want 24, and if you have any hungry family or friends around trust me you will want more than 12! It is also a gluten free recipe that I promise tastes just as delicious if not dare I say better than any gluteny cake you have ever tried.


1 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
¾ cup brown rice flour
¾ cup potato starch or tapioca flour
½ teaspoon xanath gum
1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
1 3oz package strawberry jello
½ cup canola oil
½ cup milk (soy or moo cow)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup strawberries


Preheat the oven to 350 then combine the sugar and eggs in a large bowl and beat until well combined. In another bowl sift together the flours, xanath gum, baking powder, salt, and jello. In a third bowl combine the oil, milk, vanilla and strawberries and using a stand or hand mixer blend on medium high until the berries have broken down. Slowly add the liquid berry mixture and the flour mixture to the bowl of egg and sugar and beat at medium speed until fully combined and slightly fluffy, about 1 minute.

Pour the rosy batter into a paper cup lined muffin tin and bake for 17 to 20 minutes or until cakes have browned along the edges slightly. Let the cupcakes cool for a few minutes before removing them from the tin to sit on a wire rack until completely cool. Top the cakes with your favorite frosting, I used a cream cheese one.

Cream Cheese Frosting


½ cup cream cheese
½ cup butter
3 cups powdered sugar
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
1 tablespoon milk


Cream together the cream cheese and butter until smooth. Add to this the sugar, vanilla, and milk and mix until completely smooth. Spread the frosting onto the cupcakes. Any extra frosting can be kept in the fridge for up to 5 days.


Soft fluffy cake, sweet strawberries, and rich cream cheese frosting all wrapped up in a pretty pink package. The perfect springtime treat for all of the strawberry lovers in your life.


French Heirloom Potatoes in Vinaigrette

Our very first recipe! Much thanks to food writer Caron Golden for sharing her discoveries & hard work with all of us.  She records her adventures with food at San Diego Foodstuff and San Diego News Network.

“To Market, To Market… With San Diego Foodstuff is your guide to the culinary treats found beyond our region’s homogeneous supermarkets–in ethnic markets, artisan bakeries, specialty gourmet shops, produce markets and more.” – San Diego Foodstuff

French Heirloom Potatoes in Vinaigrette Recipe
By Caron Golden
Serves 4

If you can have a favorite potato, mine is the little French heirloom potato. It’s a petite red oblong tuber, about three or four inches long, with flesh that’s a very dainty yellow hue. Instead of roasting potatoes, which I love to do, I slice these and boiled them briefly, then toss them with the Dijon Green Garlic vinaigrette, sliced kalamata olives and, yes, the greens from the green garlic. The dressing soaks into the potatoes, giving them both a terrific consistency and pronounced flavor from the garlic and mustard.

  • ½ cup Kalamata olives, sliced
  • ½ cup Dijon Green Garlic Vinaigrette (see below)

Boil potato slices in salted water until just tender. Remove from heat and drain.

Remove greens from the green garlic and chop coarsely.

Make vinaigrette. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and gently mix them together to avoid breaking up the potato slices. Let sit for about 20 minutes to let the potatoes fully absorb the dressing. Add more vinaigrette if necessary.

Dijon Green Garlic Vinaigrette
Makes 1 cup

  • 2 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1/3 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. sugar
  • 2/3 cup olive oil

Mince head and white part of green garlic stalk.

Whisk together all the ingredients but the olive oil to blend. Then slowly whisk in the olive oil. Let sit for at least an hour to let the flavors come together. Taste and adjust seasonings.


**Photos & recipes courtesy of Caron Golden**

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