Beautiful and lush heart shaped strawberries have been enjoyed since Roman times. Today they are grown around the world and seen in nearly every culture. They can be consumed raw, cooked or dried and while are fairly expensive, also one of the most purchased fruits out there.
What Are Strawberries?
Strawberries are a fruit and part of the rose family with a growing and harvest season in the warmer months, which varies depending on geographic location. Some grow and harvest year round. In fact, some of the best strawberries I’ve ever had were in Japan.
There are over a 100 species and subspecies of strawberries, all with distinct shapes and features.
Like all produce, strawberries should be rinsed before eating. The green stems and leaves are edible, but most people hull them. I used to think a huller was a nonsense tool, but now I can’t live without one. You can also use a paring knife.
What Do Strawberries Taste Like?
Strawberry flavors can also range depending on species, time of year and also ripeness. Ripe strawberries at the height of the season are sweet and juicy.
They might be slightly sour or tart and have this feature more often during off-peak months. Smaller, brighter red strawberries tend to be sweeter while larger berries with a white inside are a little less flavorful.
These are best macerated, meaning they are tossed in sugar and allowed to sit for a short time so they can sweeten. Sugar will dissolve in natural juices and get a little sticky.
Strawberry flavor is also heightened by adding a small amount of salt, citrus juice or vinegar, which is why they are so commonly paired with a balsamic glaze.
How to Store Strawberries
When you arrive home, inspect the berries for any mold that was growing in places unseen when in the container. Remove those berries immediately.
Next, place in a container that has some airflow, commonly the container they come in is fine.
Do not wash your strawberries until you are ready to eat them. They absorb moisture and will get all mushy if left with water droplets on them.
If you plan to eat them within a day or so, they are fine on the counter as long as your kitchen isn’t too hot. If you are going to be eating them longer than that, store in the fridge.
When you are ready to eat them, rinse well and then pat dry with a paper towel.
Health Benefits of Strawberries
Strawberries have long been known to have many health benefits. Some of the most popular are:
- High in water content for hydration
- Low in calories and fat
- High in antioxidants
- High in Vitamin C
- High in dietary fiber
- Low in natural sugars
Strawberries are probably best for eating raw as a snack or breakfast, but consider them for some of these other uses as well.
- Smoothies- either fresh or frozen
- BBQ Sauces
- Dessert sauces
Listed below, we have over 30 strawberry recipes that will blow your mind!