Another post all about fruit.
While some may find these informational articles (written for meal planning/recipe site Food on the Table) boring, especially when compared to such posts as the S’mores Party and Backyard Campout (honestly how can you top s’mores), I love all the useful information they provide, which always comes in handy later on, like when doing important things like playing along with Alex Trebek and the contests of Jeopardy every afternoon at 4:00 (man too bad these articles don’t teach me how to avoid run-on sentences).
Anywho…. Today’s article is about…. Yup, you guessed it, blueberries.
So go forth.
Gain useful knowledge and don’t forget to check out all the tasty blueberry recipes below.
Crunch. Pop. Savor. Biting into a fresh summer blueberry will cause an explosion in your mouth. Berry season is here and these beautiful, plump, indigo berries can be found making their way to produce stands across the country.
Blueberries, once known as ‘star-berries’ because of the star like shape on their skin, are one of the few fruits native to North America. They belong to the heath family, which includes cranberries, azaleas, and mountain laurel.
Considered a powerful super food, blueberries are loaded with vital vitamins and nutrients. Blueberries are an excellent source vitamins C, K, and E, as well as, fiber, manganese and other antioxidants. Studies have shown that blueberries, as part of a well-balanced diet, can reduce heart disease, cancer, cognitive degeneration, and lower cholesterol.
Blueberry season starts in mid-May for the southern states and moves north as the season progresses to the end of September. When selecting, lightly shake the container the berries are sold in; as fresh berries should move around freely within the container while moldy or rotten berries will clump together. Also, look for berries that are deep blue in color, firm and have a slight sheen to their skin
Since blueberries are ripe and ready to eat when purchased, they can be stored at room temperature for up to two days and then should be stored in the refrigerator for about one week. For best results, pick through and remove any moldy, discolored, or smashed berries before storing. Berries should be washed right before using, not before storing, as the extra moisture will cause them to age more quickly. If freezing fresh blueberries for later use, wash and thoroughly dry berries. Then, place blueberries on a baking sheet lined with wax paper and place in the freezer until frozen. Transfer individually frozen berries to freezer safe packaging and freeze for up to twelve months.
With their unique flavor, texture, and health benefits; blueberries are a versatile food that can be incorporated into any diet using a variety of cooking techniques. Enjoy blueberries raw as a healthy snack, or added to salads, cereals and smoothies. Blueberries can be baked in pies, muffins, or pancakes; and even lend themselves to savory dishes.