One of my favorite berries of all time is the Raspberry. This beautiful fruit is mostly identified as red in color. They do grow in black, gold, Orange, white and purple verities as well. Red is by far the most well known of this species. The raspberry is native to Europe. Since the climate is right for several regions, there are many other countries cultivating this magnificent berry. The main producers are Poland, United States, Germany, and Chile.
The raspberry has many nutritious values that are essential for optimum health. They are low in calories and saturated fats. They are a great source of dietary fiber and antioxidants. They have high levels of phenolic flavonoids phytochemicals. These fight against cancer, aging, inflammation, and neurodegenerative disease.
Raspberries are where the low calorie sugar extract called Xylitol comes from. Xylitol absorbs more slowly in the intestines than sugar. Thus, is safer for diabetics use.
Eat raspberries fresh and you have a great source of Vitamin C. Vitamin C is an antioxidant which attack the free radicals that float inside your body. Other forms of antioxidants in the raspberry are Vitamin A and E. These help fight against the aging process.
Many vitamins work together to act as a co-factor to help the body’s metabolism of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. These vitamins are found in the raspberry, they are the B complex vitamins, and vitamin k, along side of vitamins B-6, niacin, riboflavin, and folic acid.
Raspberries also contain a fair share of minerals such as potassium, manganese, copper, iron, and magnesium. Potassium helps with controlling your heart rate and blood pressure. Copper helps with producing red blood cells.
The best time to buy raspberries is in the peak of their season which ranges from June to October. The darker the color the better tasting the raspberry is. Make sure to inspect the container that the raspberry comes in if you buy them from the super market. I always check for mold. If it is on one of them it will spread rapidly to the other berries.
Raspberries do go bad rather quickly. Buy what you are going to eat in the next few days. You can however, freeze them. They are delicious to eat straight out of the freezer or toss them into your cereal bowl. I also like them on top of my ice cream along with bananas and strawberries
Make sure to wash the berries with cold water to wash of any contaminates from insecticides or other bacteria they may have picked up on their way to the store. Pat dry them using a paper towel or cloth.
- Fresh raspberry sections are a great addition to fruit or green salad.
- They can be a great snack to enjoy in between meals
- Raspberry has also been used in fruit enriched pastries as in popular Danish pastry.
- Raspberries are a popular addition to dairy products, as in strawberry flavored ice creams, milkshakes, smoothies, and yogurt.”
All raspberry lovers have their favorite way to eat raspberries. If I am not eating them fresh, I am grabbing a jar of raspberry jam and spreading it on a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. I don’t mind the seeds, in fact, that is one of my favorite things about the jam. It gives my sandwich character and a crunch.
As always I have a recipe to follow. This is part of our smoothie collection of our recipes that you will see pop up through-out the summer.
Honey Raspberry Smoothie
1 Cup frozen raspberries
1 Cup cold Skim Milk
1 Cup plain low fat yogurt
2 Tablespoons Honey
½ teaspoon vanilla
6-8 Crushed ice cubes
Place berries and ½ cup of milk in the blender. Blend on high for 1 minute until smooth. Add remaining milk, banana, honey and vanilla. Blend for another minute. Add the ice cubes and blend slowly until smooth.
Raspberry Nutrition.” Driscoll’s. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 May 2013.
“Raspberry Nutrition Facts and Health Benefits.” Raspberry Nutrition Facts and Health Benefits. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 May 2013.