Sweet and slightly tart, fresh raspberries, available from June until mid-September, are plentiful right now and priced attractively. Not only are they full of health-promoting properties, such as manganese, vitamin C and dietary fiber, but they are also drop-dead gorgeous.
When a few are used, raspberries add just the right splash of color to salads and main courses. But, when offered practically solo in Raspberry Fool, a summer dessert of English origin, the impact of the crimson-colored berries is spectacular.
Raspberries may also be used to flavor vinegar, with raspberry vinegar being an ingredient in today’s offering of an elegant entrée comprised of boneless skinless chicken breasts, mushrooms and cream. Raspberry vinegar may be found in well-stocked supermarkets, along with other vinegars, but making your own is a simple process. I like to make it with fruity white balsamic vinegar as the base vinegar, but white wine vinegar will also work.
When purchasing raspberries, look for ones that are plump and vibrant in color. Inspect them for signs of mold, avoiding any that appear soft or mushy. If the packaging is stained or soggy, keep shopping. Raspberries perish quickly, so buy them within a day or two of use.
While in the produce department, pick up some cherries and blueberries, too. Recipes for reader favorites such as brandied cherries and blueberry cream pie are coming soon.
Sue Ade is a syndicated food writer with broad experience and interest in the culinary arts. She has worked and resided in the Lowcountry of South Carolina since 1985 and may be reached at email@example.com.