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« Baked Beans and Fourth of July Fixins’ | Main | A Honey of a Cookbook »

It’s the Berries!

By Sandy Hu
The latest from Inside Special Fork

Raspberries…blackberries…blueberries…strawberries. Summer is berry season. Have you had your fill yet?

Nothing to pit or peel, naturally formed in perfect bite-size pieces, berries are the ultimate convenience fruit. Use berries as a topping for breakfast cereals or pancakes, in salads, and over ice cream or puddings.

For a simple dessert, mix berries with sugar to taste and let set for about half an hour, until they give up their juices to create their own sauce. Serve the sweetened berries with whipped cream, heavy cream, or yogurt.

Here some berry tips:

  • Select berries that are plump and true to color; avoid shriveled or wet-looking berries.
  • Check the bottom of the container; if it’s wet or stained, some of the berries in the basket are probably past their prime.
  • Sort out the berries, toss any squishy ones, eat the too-soft ones right away, then refrigerate the rest.
  • Berries remain in their prime only for a few days, so be sure to plan ahead on how you’ll be using them, and eat them quickly.
  • Do not wash berries until ready to use.
  • To wash berries, just give them a gentle rinse, drain, lay them out on paper towels and pat gently to remove excess moisture.
  • To freeze berries, lay them on a cookie sheet in a single layer; as soon as they are frozen, pack in zip-top plastic freezer bags for up to a year.
Here are some yummy berry recipes from the Special Fork database.
  • Berry BBQ Sauce is a recipe by Katie Barreira. Use any variety of berries, or even cherries. Serve alongside grilled meats as a dipping sauce or brush on during the last minutes of grilling. It’s also great as a sauce for pulled pork or burgers.
  • Very Berry Fruit Salad by Lori Powell uses a variety of berries bathed in a dressing of honey, citrus juices and mint.
  • Snickerdoodle Shortcake Cookies by Andrew Hunter, takes a bit more effort but you can make it in stages. Bake the snickerdoodle cookies, whip up the Chantilly cream and assemble the shortcakes.
  • And for newbies, here’s a video primer on how to whip cream.

Hope you’re having a berry good summer!

Special Fork is a recipe website for your smartphone and PC that solves the daily dinnertime dilemma: what to cook now! Our bloggers blog Monday through Friday to give you cooking inspiration. Check out our recipe database for quick ideas that take no more than 30 minutes of prep time. Follow us on Facebook , Twitter, Pinterest, and YouTube.

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