Wench Anniversary Picnic!

The Wenches are celebrating their 18th anniversary – welcome to our virtual Strawberry Picnic!

Yes, the Wenches have been blogging for that long and we feel it’s definitely something to celebrate. We want to say a BIG THANK YOU to all our readers and hope you’ll join us – we wouldn’t be able to carry on without your lovely comments and your incredible support!

Here’s what we’re bringing to this feast:-

(Photo Wikimedia Commons)

Andrea:  What could be more fun for our annual Wench anniversary than to celebrate with a picnic featuring strawberries – a staple of spring/summer outdoor festivities! I’m bringing “Eton Mess”, a gloriously gooey dessert made of crumbled meringue, whipped cream and strawberries. It seems an appropriate homage to the Regency, as Eton was an iconic school for aristocrats at the time. (In fact, my upcoming Wrexford & Sloane mystery features some scenes there … though I don’t think the school will be very happy with my depiction. During the era it was known for its beating and bullying, but these days it’s and kinder, gentler place.)

(Photo Wikimedia Commons)

I’m also bringing the venue – Strawberry Fields in New York’s Central Park. Named in homage of the Beatles and John Lennon, who lived close by, it celebrates the spirit of Love – as the Beatles sang, “All you need is Love!” And this anniversary is all about Love. We Wenches are so grateful for each other and our amazing sisterhood, which is a wonderful source of friendship, support and laughter. We cherish the friendships we’ve made with all you – that’s what makes the blog worth doing! Celebrating our love of books and storytelling with our Wenchly readers is such a great joy. Thank you for being part of our family! Now grab a spoon and dig in!

(Image by https://www.freepik.com/)

Nicola:  A strawberry picnic! What a fantastic idea. I was delighted to read last week that after a cold and wet spring, the recent warm weather in the UK has led to this year’s strawberry crop being even more sweet and juicy than usual. That is definitely a result. To balance all the sweet treats, I’m bringing my favourite savoury strawberry recipe which is brie and strawberry sandwiches. I can’t remember how many years ago it was that I discovered that cheese and fruit can go very nicely together and this is one of those occasions. I like mild, creamy French brie cheese and sliced strawberries in a croissant or sandwich. The variations are endless as well – some people grill the bread and/or the cheese, others add balsamic vinegar dressing, there’s even a strawberry jalapeno baked brie although that’s probably a step too far for me!

(Image – Boba Jaglicic – Unsplash)

Anne here, happy to be celebrating another Wench anniversary. As well as the group blog, we’ve become good friends, even though not all of us have met in person. And a strawberry party is a delightful way to celebrate – unless you’re allergic to strawberries, of course. But if you are, any other berry will do. Or just eat ice cream – we won’t tell. <g>


I love strawberries, especially home-grown ones that have ripened in the sun. Those I eat straight from the plant. But if they’re supermarket strawberries, I like to slice them in half and sprinkle a very small amount of caster sugar and a teaspoon of balsamic vinegar over them, stir them up gently and let them sit an hour or two in the fridge. It really brings out the flavor. And I serve them with whipped cream or ice cream. So I’ll bring that, and since we’ll need drinks at this picnic, I’ll bring some strawberry lemonade, and strawberry daiquiris so there’s a choice.

My very favorite thing to do with strawberries is at Christmas (which comes in summer in Australia) and I make little Santa strawberries with whipped cream. It’s the perfect thing to bring for a Christmas breakfast with friends.

Pat is out playing in the strawberry fields of France and is pleased to announce that this year’s crop, when it dries out, is superb with cream or chocolate or all on its own!

(Photo by Adrianna at Unsplash)

Christina:  I love the idea of a picnic entirely devoted to strawberries – what could be more delicious? I actually enjoy them au naturel or just with lots of sugar and clotted cream, but as this is a special occasion I’m bringing a Swedish Jordgubbstårta – a strawberry cream cake made by mashing strawberries and sugar, putting that mixture in between two layers of vanilla sponge cake with some whipped cream, and topping it with lots more whipped cream and decorating with whole berries. It’s a very summery treat and it goes well with ice-cold strawberry cordial – enjoy!

Mary Jo here, savoring the delicious memories of two of Nature’s most splendid creations – chocolate, sinfully rich and luxurious as it melts on the tongue, iconic for both celebrations and healing. Strawberries, bright and juicy, invoking spring and summer with sweetness and tang, adding delight however they are used. Put the two together and you have the magical treat that is chocolate dipped strawberries. I don’t know when chocolate was formulated so that it could be used for dipping – I imagine Andrea, our Wenchly specialist in chocolate could answer that – but I do know that if you arrive somewhere and there are strawberries dipped in chocolate, you are welcome and you are loved. So here for our anniversary are virtual chocolate dipped strawberries for all our great readers and guests over the years!

Susan:  Wow, another anniversary for the Word Wenches! We’re celebrating the strawberry season for this anniversary, so today I went to our local orchard, where early strawberries were picked just this morning for the shop. I’ll save them for my 8-yr-old granddaughter’s visit this week – she invented a strawberry recipe for a recent family gathering and wants to make it again. It’s a layered dish of fresh strawberries, corn flakes, and whipped cream. We all tried it, and it’s quite tasty. The Word Wenches have become a family over the years, certainly a sisterhood, so our new family dessert seems like a fitting strawberry dish to bring to our virtual gathering.

One of the secrets of our blog’s longevity is the flexibility and camaraderie we Wenches have developed as authors and as women. I’m grateful every day for the support, the sisterhood, and the kindness and creativity in this amazing group. When we began this adventure eighteen years ago, none of us could have predicted that we would still be blogging today. We owe a lot of that longevity to our readers, and we are grateful for your support every day! Happy Anniversary to all of us!

Now please come and join us and tell us what you’re bringing to our picnic – we look forward to sharing!

37 thoughts on “Wench Anniversary Picnic!”

  1. Congratulations on your 18th anniversary! Thank you for all your wonderful blogs and books, which have enriched our lives.
    I’ll bring a strawberry lemon cake with homemade strawberry jam between the lemon cake layers, drizzled with a lemon glaze, and decorated with fresh strawberries.

    • That sounds amazing, Cathleen, thank you! I’m sure we’ll all enjoy a slice of that very much and I hope you like the rest of what’s on offer. And many thanks for the congrats – we’re so please you’re enjoying the blog!

  2. I have a lovely recipe for strawberry pie-actually it’s more of a tart, because the crust is prebaked, and the filling is fresh berries covered with a glaze, and topped with whipped cream.
    Happy anniversary!

  3. Congrats in your 18th anniversary! Your blogs are so interesting and informative and fun! I will bring strawberry mousse topped with a swirl of whipped cream and strawberry daiquiris to toast the anniversary. Lomg may you reign!

  4. You have me drooling!
    Happy 18th anniversary to you all. May there be many more happy years ahead.
    What will I bring? A spoon, a fork, and a napkin times a hundred so there will be enough for us all).

  5. WOW! 18 years? Y’all must have started when all of you were in elementary school. I can see it now, coming down the slide and discussing upcoming books.

    Strawberries are one of my favorite things. And I am so grateful that frozen strawberries are available any time I need a fix.

    Thank you all for sharing your knowledge and skill and your love of writing. Take care – God Bless each of you.

  6. Happy anniversary to you all and for bringing us some wonderful posts and book recommendations over the years. I’ll bring just plain strawberries so that I can eat something 🙂 I can’t have dairy so that’s the cream and cakes out!! It’s when I miss cream the most, when eating a bowl of strawberries.
    Enjoy the picnic!!!

    • I like them just as they are – nothing wrong with that! And we’re so pleased you enjoy the blog posts!

  7. Wow! 18 years — and I’ve been reading since the very beginning. I love strawberries, and where I live we even have a Strawberry Fest every summer! All your treats sound delicious, so I think I will add a strawberry-rhubarb pie, along with my congratulations!

  8. Yum. All those delicious strawberry treats! Happy 18th anniversary, Wenches! I’ll bring Pimm’s Cups for all, garnished with strawberries.

  9. Happy Anniversary! Of course that calls for champagne and/or Prosecco so that’s what I’m bringing along with the strawberries. Garnish or floating.

    • Ah, of course Jeanne! Strawberries look so pretty floating in the bubbles – very summery! Thank you!

  10. Happy anniversary to my favorite group of authors.
    I am bringing something I make frequently for dinner although it is a breakfast dish – a Dutch baby topped with strawberries. If you don’t know what a Dutch baby is, it is also called an oven pancake. I bake it in a cast iron skillet and the edges puff up. Delicious! I will share the recipe if anyone wants it.

    • That’s very intriguing, Jan – please do post a recipe! It sounds a bit like Yorkshire pudding but sweet? We look forward to trying it out and thank you for your kind words!

  11. I will bring homemade strawberry ice cream. So so so tasty! And some home made strawberry jam so Teresa can have some on her favorite toast or scone (if that isn’t too heretical…grin)

    Yay to the 18 years. I love, love this blog, the authors and the readers – The whole Wenchly community. So many wonderful view points. So many wonderful topics.


    • Thank you so much, Vicki! Of course we need ice cream and strawberry jam on scones is the best! I’m sure Teresa won’t be the only one partaking 🙂 So glad you enjoy the blog!

  12. Congratulations to all of you for hosting the consistently friendliest and most interesting regency blog on the planet, and for doing it for 18 years! I hope you all get lots of strawberries!

    • Thank you very much Janice, that’s so lovely to hear! We couldn’t do it without you and all our wonderful readers!

  13. Happy anniversary! Keeping with the strawberry theme, my mother in law used to make strawberry bread. I’m not much of a strawberry flavor fan, but the bread was delicious and made from frozen strawberries. 🍓 I’m still trying to find that recipe now that she is no longer with us.😋


    • How interesting, Lil Miss — I’ve never heard of strawberry bread. It’s a shame when family recipes get lost — there are a couple from my mum and grandma that I would love to have, but sadly, battered old recipe books, especially with handwritten recipes in them, tend to get thrown out.

  14. Thank you all for the so many years of happy reading you have all provided me and my female family members. I can’t tell you how grateful we are. Sometimes we are sitting and discussing characters and their lives and a puzzled outsider will ask how they are related to the family!! Congratulations and here’s to many, many more. I can’t eat strawberries but I can bring an antique strawberry patterned dinner set to eat off and drink tea or coffee from afterwards. See two of the plates here https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/204751782780chn=ps&_ul=AU&mkevt=1&mkcid=28&srsltid=AfmBOoqHbgoDaVcqEEyn6RKyuq1Mq4YDm0ey9FyEO9vIhPoWMQEAW4R03Qk
    And be careful not to drop one!!


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