Summer arrives and our dinner tables move outside; gardens and markets overflow with abundance; and baskets filled with zucchini, cucumbers, and summer squash appear at the workplace or on neighborhood porches with a sign that reads, Enjoy.
One such treasure of the summer season is blackberries. Soon they will appear in farm markets and at pick your own sites. Why should you consider eating more blackberries?
- Blackberries are high in Vitamins C and K.
- They also are high in antioxidants and fiber.
How should you purchase and care for blackberries?
- Choose blackberries that are firm, plump and richly colored.
- All berries should be dry with no signs of juice leaking out.
- Avoid containers with stains on them.
- Berries will not ripen after picking.
- Remove any berries that appear over ripe.
- Refrigerate up to 2 days.
- Do not wash berries until just before serving.
- Wash gently and drain well on paper towels.
Blackberries are delicious as snacks, over cereal or yogurt and blended into smoothies. Use in salads, baked goods, frozen desserts, jams and vinaigrettes. Blackberries actually pair well with apples, so you might want to try a new combination this summer.
For a fun outdoor activity, visit a local farm market to pick your own, or just purchase fresh local grown produce. Try this delicious blackberry almond garden salad for dinner tonight
Blackberry Almond Garden Salad
2 pounds mixed salad greens
1 cup mandarin oranges, drained
½ cup balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp. olive oil
2 tbsp. sugar
½ cup fresh blackberries
2 chicken breasts, grilled
Mix balsamic vinegar, olive oil, sugar together. Pour over the blackberries, Refrigerate. When ready to serve, pour the dressing mixture over the salad greens and add the grilled chicken breasts. Add a crusty whole wheat roll for a delicious summer supper.
Written by: Beth Stefura, M Ed, RD,LD, Ohio State University Extension, Mahoning County, Crossroads EERA, firstname.lastname@example.org
Reviewed by: Donna Green, BS, MA, Family and Consumer Sciences Educator, Ohio State University Extension, Erie County, Erie Basin EERA, email@example.com