Berry Facts You Just Want to Know
Berry facts are good to know especially if you’re trying to watch what you eat. Berries are one of the best things to have. They pack a powerful punch with lots of antioxidents, vitamins and minerals. Besides that, they sure are good!
I’m here to give you the berry facts on several different kinds of berries.
What are berries?
Berries are small, pulpy fruits. Most of them are edible. There are some that are poisonous, but unless you’re walking around lost in the woods, then you probably don’t need to worry about them.
Everyone in the world eats berries. They’re most often used in jams, preserves, cakes, pies, muffins or cupcakes. The berry industry varies from one country to the next as does the types of berries that are cultivated or grown in the wild. Raspberries and strawberries have been bred for hundreds of years and are now so very different from their wild counterparts. Ligonberries and cloudberries are almost always grown wild.
Berries have always been a valuable food source for humans and animals alike. They were a seasonal staple for hunter-gatherers for thousands of years. Even today, berry-picking is popular in Europe and the United States. Over time, humans learned how to preserve berries so they could be used during the lean winter months. The Native Americans would mix them with meats and fats to make pemmican.
Some species of blackberries and raspberries have been cultivated in Europe since the 17th century while the smooth-skinned cranberries and blueberries have been cultivated in the United States for over 100 years. The most widely cultivated berry in modern times is the strawberry. Globally, it’s produced by twice the amount of any other berry.
Berries are most commonly used in pies and tarts. There’s always a wonderful recipe for blueberry pies or blackberry pies. Then, you have the cakes, muffins and breads. How about some yummy blueberry muffins or a berry cobbler or even a crumb cake with berries?
Cranberry juice anyone? If you don’t like it straight, they make it mixed with other fruits and berries. Of course, there’s always wine and even some beers are made with berries.
Dried berries are great for baking in breads. Of course, they’re great as a snack. Try the dried blueberries or cranberries sometime.
Berries have a very short shelf life. So, you want to use them as quickly as possible. Making preserves or jams is one alternative. They can also be dehydrated or frozen.
Pickling is another way to save your berries. Sauces can be made, too. The most popular berry sauce is that made from cranberries. Cranberry sauce is used most around the holidays as a side with turkey. The same type of sauce can also be made from blueberries, raspberries and blackberries.
In the next article, I’ll be outlining the different types of berries and their facts. You might be surprised at what kind of power these little fruits can hold. In the meantime, go ahead and get that box of strawberries or blueberries and enjoy them as a snack or as a dessert with a dollop of whipped cream. Mmmm mmmmm good!