Friday, 10 June 2011

The Wonder Fruit

Maybe Forrest got it wrong.

I think he should have said, 'life's like a box of blueberries - you never know what you're going to get.'

One blueberry can taste as sweet as candy and the very next piece of fruit can make your lips pucker up from tartness. And unlike the box of chocolates, there's no little paper telling you what filling to expect from what the outside of a blueberry looks like.

But, whatever the flavour, I love them. And the taste isn't the only reason I love them.

First of all, they're incredibly easy to pick. They're in big bushes off the ground, so I don't have to bend over like I do when I'm picking strawberries. They're not too high though, so I don't need a ladder like when I'm picking apples. Also, there are no thorns on the branches like blackberries and raspberries. It's almost like blueberries are calling to me to pick them.

Second, they're great for you. Most of the time I try and eat well with a great mix of fruit and veggies because fruit has so much sugar in it. But with blueberries I don't even mind because there have been so many findings in studies that show blueberries are wonderful for you.

Blueberries contain a huge amount of antioxidants that help you and your body in so many ways. They help to lower cholesterol and are good for your heart.  They can help inhibit cancer cell development. They can also help with memory loss and so much more.

And I don't know if you would have guessed it, but blueberries make up about half of Canada's fruit acreage, so that's the third reason I love them.

The little town of Oxford, NS is even known as the Wild Blueberry Capital of Canada and recognizes the fruit as it's official provincial berry.

So what can you make with this delicious and healthy Canadian fruit?

You can eat them fresh alone or with yogurt or cottage cheese. Cook them and make syrups, pies, cakes, or jams. Or even use them when you cook fish or meat. If it tastes good, do it!

And I have to say that lemon goes exceptionally well with blueberries and just brings out a perfectly matched flavour. So if you're still puzzled on what to make, try my Creamy Lemon Cake with Philly Whipped Cream and Blueberries.

It's definitely something I'll be making again soon!

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