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Cranberries are ridiculously popular, not only for their tasty flavor but also for their high nutrient and antioxidant content. Some people even go as far as to label them as a “superfood” because of this. Cranberries make brilliant additions to smoothies, fruit salads and dishes such as natures cereal.
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What is a cranberry?
Cranberries are native to north america and grow on low shrubs and vines. They are adored for their sweet taste and have been made into juices, jams, sauces and much more. Over the years, cranberries have become a staple for thanksgiving dinners and cranberry juice is enjoyed daily by many people.
Why are they a superfood?
Superfoods are considered to be abundant in nutrients and antioxidents. Cranberries are well known for being a superfood as well as being proven to be beneficial for health and well-being.
Cranberries are great because of the nutrients they hold, such as:
- Powerful phytochemicals, specifically phenols
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin B-1
- Vitamin B-2
- Vitamin E
Alongside this, cranberries have been used for ages to treat urinary tract infections as well as healing other parts of the body such as reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease and slowing the progression of certain cancers such as breast cancer. Cranberries are also good for helping with gastroesophageal reflux disease thanks to the beneficial phytochemical compounds.
Do cranberries have pits?
While cranberries do not have pits, they have seeds. These seeds are perfectly edible although they can be bitter and sour which may put some people off of eating raw cranberries. The seeds are proven to have some health benefits such as cleansing your livers. For anyone who does not like the sourness of the cranberry seed, they can always use cranberries in recipes for sauces and jams instead to enjoy them that way.
Recipes for cranberries
Some people love to eat fresh cranberries or even eat cranberry seeds, but other people find the fruit far too sour or overpowering. There are many ways you can use cranberries in cooking and lessen this sourness.
Cranberry juice is one of the best ways to get the great taste and health benefits of cranberries while completely ignoring their bitterness. The famous red color of this juice also looks incredible and having some of this stuff ready to drink during the week is amazing.
In terms of ingredients you will need:
- 2 quartz water
- 8 cups fresh frozen cranberries
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1/2 cup lemon juice
- 1/2 cup orange juice
The great thing about this recipe is how easy the ingredients are to get, and that you can change them for whatever you like. It is not uncommon to swap the lemon juice out for lime instead, or the orange juice to be swapped with pineapple.
If you need more cranberry juice than this, the recipe can just be multiplied until you have enough to quench your thirst.
First of all you are going to want to bring the water and cranberries to a boil in a dutch oven or a large saucepan on your stove top. Once a rolling boil has been achieved, lower the heat and cover the mixture while it simmers for 20 minutes. Stir occasionally to avoid burning your juice.
After this, you are going to want to put this mixture through a fine strainer, compressing with a spoon, until all the liquids have been extracted. You can throw away your berry remains now and add the mixture back into your pot. Stir in your juices and sugar, and bring this to a boil until all of the sugar has dissolved and you are left with a smooth liquid.
Remove this juice from the heat and let it cool. Once cool, transfer your juice to a pitcher or fridge-safe container and leave it in the fridge until it is chilled. Once chilled, you can now drink it whenever you want and enjoy the benefits of your homemade juice.
Cranberry sauce can be used for so many things and is not limited at all. By that I mean it can be for anything fruity but also pairs well with turkey and other meats. It is shockingly simple to make, as well.
The ingredients needed will be:
- 100g light muscovado sugar
- 100ml orange juice, fresh or carton
- 250g fresh or frozen raw cranberries
Into a pan, add your sugar and orange juice and then bring this to a boil. Once boiling, add your cranberries and simmer until the berries are tender and soft but still maintain their shape. This will take longer if your berries are fresh. This can be stored in the fridge but bring to room temperature before using. Pairs wonderfully with greek yoghurt or a cold turkey sandwhich.
Nature’s cereal is hailed for its simplicity and how healthy it is. The ingredients are also very easy to swap out with other things depending on what you fancy. There is no real way of measuring the ideal amounts of ingredients so that is up to you. However, the ingredients needed are:
- 1 part cranberries
- 1 part raspberries
- 1 part blackberries
- Coconut water
- Small chunks of ice
If you are not a fan of bitter tasting berries then these can be swapped out for whatever fruits you prefer, and the ice is optional. The method for this is incredibly simple as it is with normal cereal, just add them all into a bowl and pour your desired amount of coconut water in. The ice will help give it a crunchy texture and the berries will bring flavour to the bowl.
Nature’s cereal is insanely healthy but can have a bitter taste depending on your used berries. The breakfast is beneficial for your health due to the nutrients and antioxidants found in all of the ingredients, it is sure to leave your hydrated and happy for the rest of the day.
Cranberries do have seeds but they are completely edible, despite having a more bitter flavor than the berry itself. Cranberries are used in so many recipes and are a delight to incorporate into your everyday diet. They are also sure to prove beneficial in the long run as they cleanse your liver and help fight off the progression of cancers.