I’ve been a little bogged down a little this weekend, specifically in cranberries. A couple of months ago, I toured an authentic certified organic cranberry farm on Cape Cod outside Harwich, MA. Leo and Andrea were our hosts on their family farm, the largest organic cranberry bog on Cape Cod. As you most likely know, this native North American fruit was actually introduced to the Pilgrims by American Indians and served at the first Thanksgiving feast. So naturally, Cape Cod is THE place to see all the action from the original source.
Bogs are one of North America’s most distinctive types of wetlands, thus, it’s truly amazing these hardy little powerhouses actually thrive to harvest. Seeing the berries in all their ripened glory between the dry harvest (fresh fruit berries like we purchase in the store) and the final wet harvest (juice and jelly berries like what you see floating in bogs on TV commercials for Ocean Spray) was a surprising thrill. And although quite bitter, raw cranberries in their natural state pack a punch of nutrients, fiber, and rich antioxidants with serious health benefits to promote digestion, control blood sugar, and protect the body from illness. Fun fact: Mr. Fred Rogers drank a hot cup of cranberry juice every morning upon rising. Hmmm…
So…why cranberries? What do they have to do with my gratefulness journey anyway? Quite simply, cranberries have been a critical part of my health journey the last decade, especially during cancer treatments. Visiting a cranberry bog and learning firsthand about the growing and harvesting of this miracle berry allowed me the opportunity to thank these farmers (and, of course, the berries).
Think of a helpful food you are grateful to have access to each day.
I’m currently experimenting with homemade cranberry sauce and other recipes for the upcoming holidays with the harvest gleaned at the farm. But more than anything, I’m simply grateful for the capacity, the ability, and the willingness to learn about a plucky red berry on a vine in a bog down at the Cape… 🙂