The Raspberry (or Raspberries) is a small edible fruit from a prickly Rubus shrub from the Rose family. Raspberries have a tart taste and sweet aroma. There are also red, black and golden varieties of this fruit. Raspberries are high in Vitamin C, fiber, manganese and antioxidants.
A strong-flavoured berry made up of many connecting drupelets. It has different varieties which includes golden yellow in color, black, purple, and red. The most common type is red.
Selecting and Buying
Select those that have a deep color and good aroma. If buying in a container, check the bottom to see if it is stained or leaking juice as this indicates that they are too soft and are already overripe.
The best way to get raspberries is to pick your own. Select those that are bright and even colored. When berries are ripe, they should pull off the hull easily. Make sure you pick ripe raspberries because once they are picked, they don't ripen anymore.
Raspberries are fragile and thin skinned, and should be chilled promptly after harvest. Picking in the morning while still cool, allows for slightly extended shelf life. However, picking while dew is on the plant can increase the spread of diseases.
Most common and most cultivated variety is the red raspberry. However, other varieties exist which include the purple-flowering, the black raspberry, and the golden raspberry. Other berries related to the raspberries are often considered to be the same fruit are the wild raspberries and the Arctic brambleberry.
Preparation and Use
Raspberries are grown for both the fresh fruit market and for commercial processing into individually frozen fruit, puree, juice, put over ice cream, mixed with yogurt or as dried fruit for various grocery products.
It can also be made into jams or be frozen.
Raspberries are used in salads, puddings, cakes, tarts, and other desserts. They are added as a topping on cereal, waffles, and pancakes. Raspberries are used to flavor vinegar, and are also used to flavor, wine, champagne, liqueurs, and spirits. They can also be cooked and made into jellies and jams.
Because raspberries have an intense flavor, small amounts can be used in recipes and are often blended with other fruits and juices.
Raspberries should not be washed until immediately before serving. Because they are fragile, some recommend not washing them at all. But if you intend to, using a light touch, wash them quickly and gently so that they don't soak up too much of the water and become mushy.
Conserving and Storing
Raspberries are best within one day of being picked, so eat them quickly after purchase. Although raspberries taste best at room temperature, they will not last long without refrigeration
Store unwashed berries in their original container although it is best to spread them in a single layer on paper towels Although it is fine to cover them loosely with plastic wrap, it is recommended that you store them uncovered. Raspberries will last in the refrigerator for a day or two.
To store them for a longer period of time, you can freeze them for up to one year. The best approach is a two-step process. First, freeze them in a single layer on a cookie sheet then transfer the frozen berries to an airtight container. Even when frozen, raspberries are rather fragile, so choose a container that will protect them.