Blueberry is More Than a Fruit in the Kitchen
The Vital Essence and Colors of Blueberries
Blueberries, the fruits, grow across the globe. The hardy bushes have been mainstays of indigenous peoples of North America, for centuries.
Under the tutelage of Native Americans, the first European colonists learned to value the blueberry plant for it's nutritious fruit. The Native Americans demonstrated the many uses of the berry, including as a medicine for some conditions.
For coughs and teas, sometimes they included both roots and leaves seeped in hot water in their medicinal concoctions.
The colonists learned to dry blueberries for use the year round. To season meat, dried berries could be pounded to a powder and packed onto the raw cut of meat, prior to roasting. Dried berries punctuated the flavors of soups, being versatile as accents.
In addition to its primacy as a foodstuff, and usefulness as a medicinal tonic, the brilliant color of fresh berries and steeped dried berries made a vibrant and gentle dye for blankets, garments and baskets.
In North America three main strains of blueberry plants thrive. The tallest is called the Northern Highbush, which is the ancestor of today's commercial blueberry industry. The Southern Rabbiteye flourishes in the Southern United States, a smaller version of the plant. Wild Lowbush Blueberries are so hardy they grow all over the cold northland, seldom taller than a couple feet high.
Stalking the Wild Blueberry is a delight in itself. It entails a journey out of the urban landscape, to uncultivated land at higher elevations. Pickers find themselves surrounded by scenic vistas and quiet like one never experiences in a city or town.
It's wise to make some people noise while concentrating on finding the plants and scooping up the berries off the branches. Bears, too, love blueberries, but they are easily frightened away by some singing, chatter, or light banging of a spoon on a metal can.
As a child in Alaska we often picked Wild Lowbush Blueberries as a family group. Mom saved up old fashioned shortening cans (the kind that had bails with which to carry them). She always passed out a spoon to each member, and one or another of us always plunked away on our can.
We were always bear-free on our wilderness outings, and this we attribute to Mom's resourcefulness. Such berry gathering trips are prized childhood memory. Blueberry Council">
image credit: my photo
The Many Colors of Blueberries
Blueberries in the fridge are like gold in the bank! They feed the tummy. The provide Vitamins, Minerals, and Potency!
One Cup Blueberries Contain
Dietary Fiber 4g
One 2010 study shows that certain obese persons decreased blood pressure by consuming blueberry juice drinks over a two month period. Blueberry Blood Pressure
A Boxful Ready to Eat
Blueberry Bell Flowers
Blueberry antioxidants are very heat stable, s cook, freeze or dry your blueberries. Cooking Blueberries
Highest in Antioxidants of Any Fruit or Veggie
Vivid blueberry color graces everything from pie crusts to the elegant kitchen stove. Here's a selection of appealing blueberry blue items.
Elegant Blueberry Goods Ripe for the Picking
Artfully Roasted Duck with Blueberry Sauce
Spiced recipe from blueberrycouncil.org Roast Duck
Take a Side in the Blueberry Debate
Do you grow or pick your own blueberries?