For our August Harvest of the Month, we are celebrating one of the most delicious and fun fruits – blackberries. English poet, Laurie Lee once stated, “Blackberries clustered against the sky, heavy and dark as thunder, which we plucked and gobbled, hour after hour, lips purple, hands stained to the wrists.” That thought just brings a smile to one’s face because it represents summer. Blackberries are a wonderful food that are loaded with nutrients. So try some of our delightful menu items that feature blackberries this month in our cafeterias throughout CHI.
Fun Facts About Blackberries
Check out these fun facts provided by Michelle Wo, Clinical Nutrition Manager in Pasadena, Texas:
- Blackberries can help you look and feel younger as regular consumption promotes brain function and maintains good memory skills, as well as tightens skin and tissues.
- Blackberries have been used by women in labor to help relieve pain as they have high levels of Vitamin K which can act as a muscle relaxant.
- There are more than 10 different Blackberry Festivals in the United States held during June, July and August.
Try These Delicious Recipes
How to Buy, Store and Prepare
How to Buy and Store: Select blackberries that are plump, uniform in color with a dark purple hue, and have a fresh berry smell. It’s also fun to pick your own blackberries or buy them at a farmers market. Store fresh blackberries in the refrigerator for 2-4 days (they can spoil quickly). For longer storage, freeze them in an airtight container.
How to Prepare: For many recipes, simply rinse the fruit and add the blackberries whole to the recipe. When baking, carefully fold the blackberries into the batter to avoid having the dark purple juice stain the mixture.
Making it Kid-Friendly
Kids will love blackberries mixed in a fruit salad, yogurt or a frozen smoothie. They also make a yummy syrup for pancakes or waffles. Or serve fresh blackberries with blueberries and raspberries on top of vanilla ice cream as a tasty summertime treat!
Nutrition and Health Benefits
Blackberries are an aggregate fruit made up of little drupelets that are arranged in a circular fashion. Each drupelet contains pulp and a tiny seed. One blackberry can contain about 80-100 drupelets and together, all those drupelets are packed with multiple nutritional benefits. Blackberries are considered a superfood and can aid against cardiac disease, diabetes and cancer. They also protect against free radical damage and are significant sources of fiber (both soluble and insoluble) and Vitamin C.
Blackberries (1 cup)
|Calories: 62||Saturated Fat: 0g|
|Total Fat: 0g||Monounsaturated Fat: 0g|
|Total Carbohydrate: 14||Vitamin A: 6%|
|Fiber: 8g||Vitamin C: 50%|
|Protein: 2g||Calcium: 4%|