Summertime means berry time: the aromatic berry varieties, which taste just as pure as juice or compote, are enticing with their varied offerings. In addition, the healthy as well as delicious berries provide numerous valuable ingredients. Most associate it with summer - the bright colors and the sweet and sour, refreshing taste of berry fruit. But berry fruit not only tastes good, it also has high levels of vitamins and minerals, and plenty of fiber to promote bowel function. At the same time berries have a variety of phytochemicals such as flavonoids and anthocyanins, which have antiviral, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and blood pressure regulating.
Closed fruits and common fruits
Although many fruits bear the name "berry" in their name, they do not always correspond to the botanical definition of berries (fruits). The botanist assigns these to the closed and group fruits:
- The most common berries are closing fruits: they remain closed even when fully ripe and their seeds are thus enveloped by the flesh. These include not only classic berries such as redcurrant, blueberry or grape berries, but also, for example, bananas, kiwis, dates, cucumbers or squash. Since such berries as the last two have a hard outer layer, they are also referred to as tank berries. If the flower has several ovaries, each with a berry-like fruit, the botanist speaks of cranberry - a relatively rare form, for example, the pokeweed count.
- On the other hand, strawberry, raspberry or blackberry are not botanically berries, but rather grouped fruits - more precisely collective or cluster stone fruits. Their seeds in the form of tiny nutlets or pebbles are not found protected in the interior of the berry, but on the outside of the fruiting body.
- Even elderberry or juniper berries do not live up to their name - the former are among the stone fruits, the latter are cones of an evergreen cypress species.
In the trade, various fruits are grouped under the term "berry fruit" - botanically not quite correct, but traditional and understandable to the consumer. Their common feature is their characteristics: small and round and relatively soft and - of course - edible. As a result, "veggie berries" such as tomato are not covered, and fruits such as strawberries are counted among them.
5 facts about raspberries - © Jill Wellington
Three important fruit rules
Since the berries are very sensitive, a gentle and rapid processing is important. Please note the following rules:
- When shopping, pay attention to plump fruits and dry, shiny bowls, as the berries are very sensitive to pressure and quickly mold after injury.
- To clean the fruits only briefly dipped in stagnant water and immediately on a paper towel to drain, so they do not suck with the water and become soggy.
- In a fridge the fresh berries last one to two days.
Freeze berries properly
In addition to their diverse utilization options, for example for juice, compote, fruit ice or as a cake topping, the berries can also be frozen well. At the same time, valuable vitamins are retained. However, because of their high water content after thawing, they often become soggy and stick together.
This can be avoided if they are frozen in individual layers (spread side by side on a board or foil) outside and then placed together in a bag and frozen properly. And even if the berries thaw after thawing are no longer as crisp as after harvesting: For certain types of preparation such as fruit purée, groats or milkshake, the delicious fruits are always suitable.
|berry||Healthy ingredients||effect||harvest time|
|Strawberry||Vitamin C, flavonoids, salicylic acid, tannins, calcium, potassium, iron||gg. Falling through, metabolism-stimulating, against rheumatism and gout||May to July|
|Raspberry||Vitamin C, A, rutin, biotin, potassium, magnesium, iron, ellagic acid||fever-lowering, blood-cleansing, bones-forming, support for gastrointestinal catarrhs||May to August|
|Barbed-berry||Vitamin C, silicon, citric acid, calcium, potassium, magnesium, pectin||acidifying, de-watering, energizing for hair and nails||July to Au-gust|
|Currant||Vitamin C, calcium, potassium, iron, phosphorus, citric acid, pectin||against rheumatism and gout, de-poisoning, anti-bacterial, immune-system-strengthening, urinary-impulsive||May to July|
|Heidel-berry||Vitamin C, beta-carotene, iron, potassium, sodium, citric acid, pectin, quercetin, an-thocyane||anti-inflammatory, blood-forming, against diarrhea, stomach pain and bladder weakness||June to August|
|Cranberry||Vitamin C, A, beta carotene, iron, magnesium, potassium, sodium, arbutin, flavonoid, pectin||Anti-stress, cholesterol-lowering, anti-throughput, urinary tract infections, gout and rheumatism, antiviral, bacteriocidal and fungicidal agents||September|
|Blackberry||Iron, calcium, ellagic acid||de-poisoning, cancer-inhibiting, hypotensive||May to July|
|Elder-berry||An-thocyans, flavonoids, essential oils, tannins||Protective effect against diseases of the cardiovascular system, joints, eyes, skin and kidneys, tonics in feverish diseases, against rheumatism and gout||June|
|Rose hip||Vitamin C, pectin||anti-oxidative, defense-enhancing, digestive, anti-inflammatory||Sep-tember to ok-tober|
|Rowan||Vitamin C, A, pectins, tannins, sorbitol||Beneficial for the stomach and intestines, anti-oxidative, digestive, anti-inflammatory||August to October|
|Sand thorn||Quercetin, many times richer in vitamin C than citrus fruits||Enrichment of various products with vitamin C, pharmaceutical use in the event of skin damage from burns and sunburn||from september|