Did You Know That Mahabaleshwar Is The Strawberry Capital Of India?
Image Credit: The strawberries in Mahabaleshwar are served with a creamy mix on the streets.

Come February, the strawberry season is blooming in the country. The bright, red fruits fill the farms of the hilly terrains of Mahabaleshwar. For the unversed, strawberry is a kind of a hybrid fruit which not only has a vibrant colour but a juicy texture and innate sweetness too. It is said that strawberries grow in the months of October to November and then from January to February. Basically, at this time, we are nearing the end of the strawberry season. While India is an agricultural land that is self-sufficient in the food sector, there are certain fruits that were brought to us by outsiders. 

The first time anyone planted a strawberry on the Indian land was a British. Back then, Mahabaleshwar was the summer capital of the Bombay Presidency and the land quality was conducive for cultivation. Under the British Raj, the strawberries landed on Indian farms via Australia. Approximately 85% of the total production of this seasonal fruit comes from the Mahabaleshwar-Panchgani belt. The taste and freshness of these strawberries lends them a distinct position in the category of berries. The strawberries are not only consumed by the locals and the other parts of the country but also frozen to be exported abroad. 

From jams to tarts and smoothies, these strawberries are utilized in various ways across the country. The several gardens in and around Panchgani not only grow strawberries but also cater to the demands of other berries like blueberries, raspberries and the like. When in Mahabaleshwar, the strawberry farms are definitely something that you shouldn’t miss out on. The Mapro Gardens started their food operations in the year 1959 and have been a well-known name for strawberries ever since. 

One highlight of this hill station is the strawberry and cream combination. Macerated strawberries are paired with whipped cream and the end result is something absolutely creamy and delicious. It is so vibrant and colourful that you won’t be able to take your eyes off it. To make it, you need to blend whipped cream and strawberries together. This smooth mixture is then added to a glass on top of which macerated strawberries are added along with strawberry syrup and some more whipped cream. This sweet and creamy dessert will definitely transport you to a heavenly world. 

In case you want to experiment with strawberries even further, try this strawberry smoothie for breakfast.