Wimbledon fortnight just wouldn’t be the same without rain, Andy Murray’s heroics and strawberries with cream. June is here, and so is a rich, juicy, fruit harvest just waiting to be enjoyed. What better than going-out and picking your own? The best of the fruit this month is cherries and berries…
Are they the new super-food? Last year, scientists at the Oregon Health and Science University in the US claimed eating cherries helped athletes recover from exercise pain. 55 runners were found to experience less pain after training if they had drank cherry juice. Good to know! Cherries, should be picked when they are of maximum size, if they are picked before they are fully mature they will not ripen off the tree. Cherries keep longer if the stems remain attached and can be stored in the refrigerator to be enjoyed for two to three days after.
A true favourite of our American cousins, the fruit which is so often deliciously served in a muffin or with a pancake, is only ripe when easy to pick – if they show resistance, they simply aren’t ready. Another tell-tell sign if the blueberry isn’t ripe is a red ring around the top of the berry where the fruit is attached to the stem. After picking, cool blueberries as quickly as possible to around or 1.5°C or 35°F.
Pick blackberries as they become soft – it is best to pick early in the day because the berries do not spoil as quickly as those picked in the afternoon. Not many people know that! Blackberries that are picked at the proper time of day and season, handled carefully, and then stored in a cool place will stay in good condition for several days after.
Often-ranked as Britain’s favourite fruit, the strawberry is synonymous with the month of June – a staggering 27,000 kilos of strawberries are eaten at the Wimbledon Championships alone, together with 7,000 litres of cream! It is best to pick strawberries in the morning when the berries are cool and the berry should be picked with the stem attached by grasping the stem between the thumb and forefinger and pinching it off of the main plant. For best storage, keep strawberries at a temperature below 4.5°C or 40°F.
It’s over to you, happy picking![box type=”shadow” align=”” class=”” width=”600″]For our August edition we want to hear from you on gluten-free cooking, eating and dining-out. Do you have any recommendations for RH restaurants or cafes with great gluten-free offerings, or do you know of any great products, resources or recipes? Please get in touch.
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