Meet at the market: a strawberry by any other name…

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Tom Shepherd’s Chandler strawberries. They are so important within the Shepherd family that Tom’s newest granddaughter shares the same name. Photo: Kathryn Barnes

Each week we meet up with Katie Hershfelt of Cultivate Events as she chats with farmers, chefs and shoppers at the Santa Barbara Farmers’ Market.

This week’s guest? Tom Shepherd of Shepherd Farms, a fifth-generation Santa Barbara resident who began farming organically in the area in 1973, and moving from plot of land to plot of land since then. He grows a special variety of strawberries that seem to have a cult following here in Santa Barbara.

Tom and his organic produce. Photo: Kathryn Barnes

Photo: Kathryn Barnes

Chandler Strawberry and Oatmeal Cookies

shared by Tom’s stepdaughter, Kelly Brotman

Recipe makes 40 servings (enough for your Memorial Day party)

  • 2 cups finely chopped Chandler strawberries
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup white sugar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).

Combine the strawberries with 1/4 cup sugar in a medium bowl. Toss gently to blend, and set aside.

Combine the flour, baking soda, and cinnamon in a large bowl. Stir in the rolled oats and blend evenly; set aside.

Beat the butter, brown sugar, and white sugar in the large mixing bowl of an electric mixer at medium speed until fluffy. Add the egg, milk, and vanilla, and continue beating until smooth. Stir in the flour mixture, and mix well to blend. Combine the strawberries with the flour mixture, and stir to blend. Drop by teaspoonfuls onto ungreased baking sheets.

Bake in preheated oven until slightly brown, about 8 minutes. Cool on baking sheets. Store in an airtight container.

Photo: Kathryn Barnes

More strawberry recipes:

Evan’s Strawberry Risotto

Christine Moore’s Strawberry Shortcakes

Wilshire’s Strawberry Pie by Hillary Naishtat

To check out all our past farmers’ market guests, click here.