Discover the wonders of fruits of the forest

Uncategorized, Food and Wellbeing

As summer approaches, our taste buds yearn for something fresh and invigorating. Berries are the perfect solution, serving as natural elixirs that offer refreshment and a sense of well-being during the sweltering days of summer.

Blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, and wild strawberries are popular choices, but here are many other types of berries to explore.

The top picks: blueberries, raspberries, black currants, red currants, wild strawberries

If the berries were a movie, the main characters would definitely be blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, and wild strawberries. They are indeed the most well-known, widespread, and appreciated fruits.

Packed with water, fiber, vitamins, and minerals, these gifts from nature are true functional foods thanks to their high concentration of antioxidants and beneficial substances for the body.

Blackberries, rich in folic acid, help relax muscles and fight common inflammations, such as sore throat. They also promote artery health and are therefore valuable allies in preventing cardiovascular diseases.

Raspberries have beneficial effects on the respiratory tract, intestines, blood vessels, and skin. An excellent source of vitamin C, this exquisite fruit is a true panacea with purifying, astringent, and anti-inflammatory properties.

Wild blueberries, thanks to their important content of flavonoids, including precious anthocyanins, are often referred to as superfoods. Among the main benefits of consuming blueberries, those related to microcirculation stand out, as well as the advantages for eye and nervous system health.

Small and delicate, woodland strawberries are an excellent source of vitamin C, potassium, iodine, calcium, iron, phosphorus, and flavonoids. One of their standout properties is their ability to control blood pressure fluctuations, making them particularly beneficial for those with mild and temporary hypertension.

Wild strawberries

Versatile, delicious, and nutritious, berries are a valuable ingredient to incorporate into your daily diet: for breakfast, as a snack, or as a dessert, they are perfect on their own, in fruit salads and smoothies, in fresh desserts and baked goods, or in unique savory recipes. They are a must-have in your pantry or freezer at home!

Elegant and tangy: currants and gooseberries

Slightly less known but equally precious, red currants, black currants, and gooseberries also belong to the large family of fruits of the forest. They share their natural habitat where they grow most favorably and many nutritional properties, such as a high content of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

Compared to other berries, which are generally sweeter, currants and gooseberries are characterized by a tangy and pungent flavor that should not be intimidating at all. So, how can we enjoy these fruits of the forest?

They can be enjoyed fresh, in refreshing fruit salads with other sweet fruits, in yogurt accompanied by delicious granola, or in thirst-quenching juices and smoothies. However, there are also some real recipes where currants and gooseberries take center stage.

Currants lend themselves to many sweet preparations like Swedish pancakes filled with red currant jam or chocolate mousse cake with red currants. These small and tasty fruits can also be used for first and second courses as a condiment, sauce, or decoration: have you ever tried porcini mushroom and red currant risotto?

Gooseberries can also be used for delicious preparations! Generally, they are used to create delicious jams, syrups, and jellies to fill tarts and pancakes. However, they can also be used raw as berries to embellish fresh fruit salads or to decorate any type of dessert.

Gooseberries

The elderberry

Sambucus nigra belongs to the flowering plant family Adoxaceae, with various species known as European elderberry or black elder.

The berries of this plant have numerous beneficial properties for the body. They are indeed a true concentrate of antioxidant and contain various vitamins from the B group, vitamin A and vitamin C, fibers, and minerals such as potassium and magnesium. In addition to providing benefits to the cardiovascular and immune systems, they have laxative, purifying, anti-flu, and notably anti-inflammatory properties.

However, it is important to pay attention: elderberries should only be consumed cooked and only when they have reached full maturity, as unripe fruits contain potentially toxic compounds. In fact, elderberries are almost never consumed raw but transformed into delicious jams, juices, infusions, and liqueurs.

If you want to try your hand at do-it-yourself picking, it is still very important to be able to recognize elderberries as they are very similar to other poisonous fruits, such as those of the dwarf elder (Sambucus ebulus).

European elderberry

Despite their small size, whether they are among the most popular, such as blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, and strawberries, or among the less commonly used ones, such as currants, gooseberries, or elderberries, all fruits of the forest are incredibly nutritious. Including them in your daily diet ensures numerous health benefits, as well as a burst of flavor and freshness.