The strawberry is a small, fleshy, sweet fruit, usually bright red in color, that grows on a low-growing plant called a strawberry bush. It is prized for its delicious flavor and juicy texture, and is often eaten raw, in desserts, jams and a variety of other culinary preparations.

Strawberries have been cultivated for centuries in different parts of the world. They are mentioned in the ancient writings of various cultures, including the Romans and ancient Greeks. In the Middle Ages, wild strawberries were gathered in the woods and used for medicinal purposes. However, it wasn't until the 18th century that strawberries began to be cultivated more systematically for food consumption.

Commercial strawberry cultivation developed in the 19th century, with improved cultivation techniques and the selection of tastier, more productive varieties. Today, strawberries are widely grown in many parts of the world, both for local consumption and for export.

Strawberries are appreciated for their sweet and tart taste, as well as for their nutritional benefits. They are often associated with the arrival of spring and the summer season, when they are widely eaten fresh and used in delicious desserts and sweet dishes.

Nutritional highlights of strawberries

Strawberries are not only delicious, they also offer a range of health-promoting nutrients. Here are just a few of the nutritional highlights of strawberries:

  1. Vitamin C: Strawberries are rich in vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant that boosts the immune system, promotes healthy skin and contributes to collagen formation.
  2. Fiber: Strawberries provide dietary fiber that supports digestion, regulates blood sugar levels and promotes a feeling of satiety.
  3. Antioxidants: Strawberries contain antioxidant compounds such as flavonoids, anthocyanins and ellagic acid, which help protect cells against oxidative damage and reduce the risk of chronic disease.
  4. Vitamin K: Strawberries are a source of vitamin K, important for blood clotting and bone health.
  5. Manganese: Strawberries provide manganese, which is involved in various enzymatic and metabolic functions in the body.
  6. Folates : Strawberries contain folates (vitamin B9), which are essential for blood cell formation and nervous system health.
  7. Potassium: Strawberries are rich in potassium, a mineral that contributes to fluid balance, muscle function and blood pressure regulation.
  8. Reduced risk of disease: Antioxidants and bioactive compounds found in strawberries are associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and certain forms of cancer.
  9. Satiety: The fiber and water present in strawberries can help maintain a feeling of satiety, which can be helpful for weight management.
  10. Brain health: Some studies suggest that the flavonoids present in strawberries may have beneficial effects on brain health and cognition.

Strawberries are a nutritious and tasty addition to your diet, offering a variety of health benefits. Whether eaten raw, in smoothies, salads or desserts, strawberries can contribute to a balanced, healthy diet.

Choosing and storing strawberries

Choosing strawberries

When choosing strawberries, follow these tips for selecting quality fruit:

  1. Color: Look for strawberries with a bright, even color. Ripe strawberries will have a bright red hue, although some varieties may be darker.
  2. Texture: Choose strawberries that are firm to the touch, with no soft spots or bruising.
  3. Tail: Strawberry tails should be green and fresh. Avoid strawberries with wilted or dried-out tails.
  4. Fragrance: Ripe strawberries will have a pleasant, sweet fragrance. Avoid those with no scent.

How to store strawberries

To prolong the freshness of your strawberries, follow these storage tips:

  1. Refrigeration: Place strawberries in the refrigerator as soon as possible to keep them fresh. Use the crisper or a shallow box lined with paper towels to prevent moisture build-up.
  2. Unwashed: Do not wash strawberries before storing, as moisture can cause them to rot more quickly.
  3. Picking: If you're picking strawberries yourself, choose fruit that is ripe and ready to eat. Strawberries do not continue to ripen once picked.
  4. Quick to use: Strawberries are best eaten soon after purchase, as they can spoil quickly.
  5. Freezing: If you have a surplus of strawberries, you can freeze them for later use. Wash, drain and spread out on a tray to freeze individually before transferring to a freezer bag.

Tip: To avoid handling strawberries too frequently, remove them from the fridge just before eating.

By following these tips, you'll be able to enjoy fresh, tasty strawberries for longer.

Tips for preparing strawberries

Here are a few tips for preparing strawberries before using them in your recipes or enjoying them:

  1. Washing: Just before use, gently wash strawberries in cold water to remove any dirt or residue. Avoid leaving them to soak for too long, as they may absorb too much moisture.
  2. Hulling: Use a clean knife or your fingers to remove the tails from the strawberries. You can also leave them with the tails if you prefer.
  3. Cutting: If you need to cut the strawberries into pieces, use a clean knife to cut them to your liking. You can cut them into quarters, slices or leave them whole, depending on the recipe.
  4. Zest: If you need lemon zest for a recipe, remove it before cutting or hulling the strawberries.
  5. Marinade: Strawberries can be marinated in lemon juice, sugar or other ingredients to intensify their flavor before using them in desserts or salads.
  6. Blending: To prepare strawberry smoothies, sauces or purées, use a blender or food processor to obtain a smooth texture.
  7. Recipe integration: Strawberries can be added to a variety of recipes, from salads to desserts. Be sure to add them at the last minute to preserve their freshness.
  8. Garnish: Use sliced or whole strawberries to garnish cakes, pies, yoghurts, cereals or drinks.
  9. Freezing: If you have a surplus of strawberries, you can freeze them for later use in smoothies, ice creams, sauces or pastries.
  10. Coulis: To make strawberry coulis, blend the strawberries with a little sugar until smooth. Use the coulis as a sauce to accompany desserts.

By following these tips, you'll be able to prepare strawberries optimally and incorporate them successfully into your favorite recipes.

Why choose organic strawberries?

Favoring organic strawberries offers several benefits for your health, the environment and sustainable farming practices. Here's why you should choose organic strawberries:

  1. Chemical-free: Organic strawberries are grown without the use of synthetic pesticides, herbicides or chemical fertilizers. This significantly reduces exposure to potentially harmful pesticide residues found on conventional strawberries.
  2. Nutritional quality: Organic growing methods promote more nutrient-rich soils, which can result in strawberries containing more vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
  3. Authentic flavor: Organic strawberries are often praised for having a more intense, authentic flavor, as they grow in balanced, natural environments.
  4. Biodiversity and ecosystems: Organic farming encourages the preservation of biodiversity, using practices that support soil health, natural pollination and the presence of native species.
  5. Water protection: Organic farming practices reduce ground and surface water pollution by avoiding the use of chemicals that could contaminate water sources.
  6. Farmers' health: Farmers and farm workers who grow organic strawberries are less exposed to toxic chemicals, improving their health and well-being.
  7. No GMOs: Organic strawberries are not genetically modified (GMO), which may be important for people wishing to avoid genetically modified foods.
  8. Traceability and standards: Organic products are subject to strict standards and controls, guaranteeing their quality, provenance and authenticity.
  9. Environmental ethics: The choice of organic products encourages environmentally-friendly and sustainable farming practices, thus contributing to the preservation of ecosystems.
  10. Support for sustainable practices: When you buy organic strawberries, you're supporting farmers who adopt more planet-friendly farming practices, fostering a more sustainable food system.

By choosing organic strawberries, not only are you taking care of your health by avoiding pesticides, but you're also contributing to a healthier environment, the preservation of biodiversity and the well-being of farming communities.

Strawberry recipes

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