Our dappled and lush green landscape sometimes handicaps our seeing the many other colors around us. But not so the bold blueberry with its jaunty crown, a primal memory of its petal-ed start in life. Our market’s tables are tittering with berries, beautifully ripe and waiting for their next life on your table.
Blueberries are native to North America. For inexplicable reasons, this sweet berry only made it east to Europe in the 1930s. Research indicates that there is a sub variety from the Carolinas with the fanciful name of Rabbiteye Blueberries. Is it possible that they produce blue-eyed rabbits in that part of the world?
There was once a beach house surrounded by blueberry bushes where a contest took place each summer. The inhabitants would wait, checking the ripening process each morning, checking to see just how much those green berries were becoming blue and just how blue. Cocky bluejays, perched on railings, twisted their heads from side to side performing the same task. Those cunning, bossy birds almost always got there first in the pre-dawn hours of peak ripening day. Must have been the only time in their lives they were quiet. Fortunately, those bushes were prolific.
The tasty blueberry is a bit of a miracle fruit. It is low in calories and carbohydrates; contains the highest concentration of antioxidants; is thought to help lower blood pressure and reduce the DNA damage of aging. Not bad for such a tiny fruit. There are many recipes on the website for blueberries which will soon include today’s recipe for Blueberry Coconut Lassi, a refreshing drink that makes a power-packed breakfast or great midday pick-me-up.