Plump, dark and juicy, blackberries are another delicious source of anthocyanin pigments and ellagic acids (both with healthy antioxidant properties), as well as vitamins C and E, fiber and the phytochemical lycopene, which protects eyesight. With anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties, a dose of blackberries may help fight minor infections too.
While the season for fresh blackberries runs from May to July, frozen blackberries can be found all year round. As with other types of berries, treat blackberries with care and wash just before eating. Add blackberries to fruit salad or bake with them as you would raspberries or other fruit. A fresh trifle of layered cake, custard and berries makes a delicious summer dessert. These recipes for blackberries offer more unique ideas.
It's easy to see why strawberries are one of the most popular berries. Fragrant, sweet and juicy, strawberries taste as good as they are for you! This rich source of vitamin C, folate, fiber and B-vitamins also packs phytonutrients and antioxidants, such as phenols, which give strawberries heart-protecting, anti-inflammatory, and anti-cancer properties.
Strawberries reach their peak between April through July when they become widely available and most delicious. They are extremely perishable, so purchase them just a few days prior to use. Look for berries that are mold-free, firm, plump, deep red in color, and shiny—with their green "caps" attached. Avoid those with green or yellow patches, which indicate sourness and poor quality. Make sure that they are not packed too tightly in their container, as this may crush them. Before refrigerating, remove all moldy or damaged strawberries. Strawberries will keep fresh in the refrigerator for one or two days.
Strawberries are often enjoyed with desserts like pies, ice cream, shortcakes, and chocolate. Try plain strawberries, or add them to your morning cereal or yogurt, as a side to your pancakes, or mixed into fruit salad or fresh green salads. Protein-rich smoothies are another great option for strawberries. Expand your palate with a new strawberry recipe.
No matter how you try 'em, berries are healthy foods that do wonders for your body.