Friday, June 29, 2012

Fresh Friday - Raspberries are In Season!


Is there anything better than the sweet, tart, juicy bite of fresh raspberries straight from the garden??  I don't think so!  Raspberries are one of my favorite fruits.  I love stocking up on them when they are in season and putting them everywhere!  I put them in yogurt, pancakes, salads, and with main dishes (my favorite is pork tenderloin with raspberry sauce like this RECIPE, but instead of preserves I use 1/4-1/3 cup smashed raspberries).  I also include them on ice cream, in oatmeal, in smoothies, and anything else I can dream up.  I have been finding them at farmer's markets already and have started searching new recipes and creating my own!  I LOVE summer :)  Here are some tips for raspberries....


Description: Raspberries and other brambleberries (blackberries, boysenberries, mulberries) are soft fruits with tart, intense juices. They come in a variety of colors red, black, purple, and gold.  If you haven't tried gold, I suggest you do next time you are at the store!  Yummy change, with a little extra tartness.  Berries grow on canes with or without thorns.  Because they have a high liquid content and thin skins, they are quite fragile.

Selection: When purchasing raspberries, look for firm, plump, deeply-colored berries with no soft spots or discolorations. All berries should be dry with no mold or signs of juice leaking on the container. They will not ripen after picking, so for the sweetest fruit, look for ones that are fully ripened.

Storage and handling: Remove any berries that look overripe from the container right away. Refrigerate for about 2-4 days. Do not wash berries until just before serving. Wash gently (fragile!) and drain well on paper towels.

Preparation: 1 lb raw = 3 cups.

Serving suggestions: Of course they are amazing plain! Try with yogurt or oatmeal for breakfast or blend into smoothies. Use in baked goods, frozen desserts, jams, and vinaigrette.  Use with protein in main dishes.  

Nutrition: Raspberries provide an excellent source of vitamin C, fiber, manganese, flavonoids, and ellagic acid.  They also offer a very good source of vitamin B2 and a good source of other B vitamins, such as niacin, folic acid, pantothenic acid, and vitamin B6.  Raspberries are low in calories and are nutrient-dense.

What is your favorite way to eat raspberries?  Any amazing combinations I can try?

Hope you got your daily dose of nutrition today!  If you like what you read, please become a member of the blog (follower, on the right), like the blog's facebook page, or follow me on twitter.  Thanks and have a fantastic day!

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