Strawberries Take the Cake (and So Much More): Fresh Talk
Toss them on a shortcake. Dribble them with balsamic. Chuck them in a cereal bowl. Or pick them from a patch, downing them one by one. Few other fruits evoke summer sweetness quite like the beloved strawberry.
Ever made your own strawberry milk? (No need for powdered pink stuff.) Toast feeling lonely? Here’s a quick and easy strawberry jam. Want to feel virtuous? Make a spinach salad with strawberries and walnuts.
Selecting: Strawberries with a deeper red color are usually the ripest; they’re also the most fragrant — and the most delicate. If you’re buying them in the store, watch for berries that appear bruised or even moldy.
Prepping: Strawberry hullers are cute but unnecessary. A small paring knife hulls just as well. Carefully grasp your knife in your dominant hand quite far down the blade toward the tip. (Don’t cut yourself.) Holding the knife tightly, press your dominant thumb into the leafy top and the knife tip just adjacent. Use your other hand to slowly turn the strawberry so the blade cuts a small circle. Voila! The hull/top should come right out. (It takes some practice, but not much.)
Storing: According to Cindy Jewell of California Giant Berry Farms, after purchase, you should remove strawberries from their plastic basket and, again, examine them for any signs of moisture or spoilage. (Toss any that are dewy.) You can transfer the remaining (dry) berries to a plastic or glass storage container lined with a paper towel and store them in the fridge.
Nutritional benefits: According to David Grotto, RD, LDN and author of 101 Foods That Could Save Your Life, a one cup serving of strawberries (about 8 berries) has 160 percent of the daily recommended value of vitamin C, even more per serving than an orange. “People think oranges are a leader in vitamin C,” Grotto says, “but strawberries hold their own.”
In addition, he says, “Strawberries have 3 grams of fiber per cup, split equally between insoluble fiber (important for promoting regularity) and soluble fiber (which promotes healthy cholesterol and helps to manage blood glucose).”
In other words, strawberries fit neatly in a special category of foods – those that qualify as a true treat while still promoting optimal health.
Swooning for strawberries? Explore all our strawberry recipes!