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Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Enjoy the Blueberries!
Skip the Muffin

All of my life I believed the best way to eat blueberries was with a muffin wrapped around them. No way could plain off-the-bush berries taste good. Well, lo and behold, I've been eating blueberries by the handful and they are fabulous! I can tolerate them with my gastric bypass system, I don't overeat or get sick with them. Best of all blueberries are in season now available at supermarkets and farm stands.

With flavors that range from mildly sweet to tart and tangy, blueberries are healthy superstars bursting with nutrition and flavor while being very low in calories. Blueberries are at their best from May through October when they are in season. Researchers at Tufts University say blueberries rank number one of fruits and vegetables when it comes to destroying harmful free radicals.

When purchasing: select blueberries that are firm and have a lively, uniform hue colored with a whitish bloom. Shake the container, noticing whether berries have the tendency to move freely; if they do not, this may indicate that they are soft and damaged or moldy. Avoid berries that appear dull in color or are soft and watery in texture. They should be free from moisture since the presence of water will cause the berries to decay.

Storing: Ripe blueberries should be stored in a covered container in the refrigerator where they will keep for about a week, although they will be freshest if consumed within a few days. Always check berries before storing and remove any damaged berries to prevent the spread of mold. But don't wash berries until right before eating as washing will remove the bloom that protects the fruit’s skin from degradation. If kept out at room temperature for more than a day, the berries may spoil.

Ripe berries can also be frozen, although this will slightly change their texture and flavor. Before freezing, wash, drain and remove any damaged berries. To better ensure uniform texture upon thawing, spread the berries out on a cookie sheet or baking pan, place in the freezer until frozen, then put the berries in a plastic bag for storage in the freezer. Berries should last up to a year in the freezer.

Now, if you just can’t bring yourself to eat them plain substitute this Blueberry-Peach Crisp recipe for the ubiquitous muffin. This recipe does not contain processed sugar and it is quite delicious. As always after WLS, monitor portions. ENJOY!

1 comment:

Diane; AL said...

To all of ya'll that don't already know me, I follow a very strict low carb WOE of eating since my surgery.
Berries of any kind are the fruits I choose to include. They have the lowest carb content.
Kaye talks about eating fresh berries. I am lucky to live near a U-PICK farm. I am able to go there and pick all sorts of fruit and veggies. It sure beats the grocery store. Also they have a stand if you don't want to pick your own. Now that's what I call fresh.