We’re still a few months (OK, like five) from raspberry season, but don’t let that stop you from enjoying them even now in the dead of winter. Grab a bag of frozen raspberries (or really any frozen berry, while you’re at it) and get creative! Crank up the heat on a Saturday morning (not too much, let’s not get crazy here) and make smoothies for the family while planning your summer vacation, or make berry muffins–frozen berries do just fine.
-Blackberries and raspberries are very closely related to one another; one difference is that the stem pulls off the plant and remains with the blackberry when picked, but does not in a raspberry, which is left with a hole at the top of the fruit
-Raspberries are what is called an ‘aggregate’ fruit, which means each berry is actually made up of about 100 smaller fruits called “drupulets,” which each have their own pulp and seed
-Raspberries are in season from June to August and are often ripe about the same time as strawberries
-DO NOT WASH THEM! (At least not right away.) Store unwashed and gently brush with a clean cloth or quickly rinse with a little water just before serving
-Raspberries have one of the highest fiber amounts perserving at up to 20% fiber per total weight
-They are also high in Vitamin C and Manganese, as well as phytochemical and anthocyanins
-Raspberries are a low-glycemic index food (along with many other berries), which means they don’t raise your blood sugar too quickly after eating them
-Lemon and Raspberry go beautifully together in this streusel muffin
-Throw fresh raspberries onto yogurt or oatmeal with granola
-DO NOT MISS this savory Raspberry Risotto with herbes de Provence and Chevre!
What an easy way to blend summer and winter together! Fancy enough for company (perhaps TOO fancy) yet easy and casual enough to whip up at home in your seats. Why not?
1 1/4 pounds good white chocolate, coarsely chopped
2 1/2 cups heavy cream
2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
2 1/4 pounds frozen mixed berries or frozen raspberries
Combine the chocolate, heavy cream, and the vanilla in a heat-proof bowl and set it over a pan of simmering water until the chocolate melts.
About 5 minutes before serving, remove the berries from the freezer and place them on individual serving plates. Ladle the warm chocolate sauce over the berries and serve.
Yield: 8 to 10 servings
Note: You can either buy frozen berries, or freeze your own by placing the berries on a flat tray in layer. When the berries are fully frozen, keep them a plastic bag in the freezer. Larger berries, such asstrawberries, do not freeze well.
Holly R. Layer received a B. A. in Journalism from Penn State and served four years in the U. S. Air Force before deciding to go back to school to become a Registered Dietician. She loves running, reading, fine stationery, colorful kitchen gadgets and ALL things food-related. An avid cook and baker, you can find her in the kitchen most days whipping up something yummy. Too bad her husband, Andrew (an East Aurora native) is the pickiest man alive! You can find her at www.thefrozenpineapple.com.