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15 Healthy And Delightful Recipes Of Berries You Can’t Miss

15 Healthy And Delightful Recipes Of Berries You Can’t Miss

Berrys are tasty, healthy and offer a variety of recipe ideas. In the U.S. fruit consumption, blueberries rank only second to strawberries in popularity of berries. Blueberries are not only popular, but also repeatedly ranked in the U.S. diet as having one of the maximal antioxidant capacities among all fruits, vegetables, spices and seasonings.

Antioxidants are essential to optimizing health by helping to combat the free radicals that can damage cellular structures as well as DNA. Raw blueberries would be the best choice rather than relying upon blueberries incorporated into baked desserts because, like other fruits, raw blueberries provide you with the best flavor and the greatest nutritional benefits.

But don’t give up on strawberries, either. One cup of strawberries contains over 100 milligrams of vitamin C, almost as much as a cup of orange juice. Strawberries also have calcium, magnesium, folate, potassium and they’re low in calories. One cup of strawberries has only 53 calories.

Following, we will focus on the appetizing taste coming from 15 delightful recipes of berries.

1. The pick-me-up berry

fizzy-berry-pick-me-up-l

    Ingredients:

    1/3 cup fresh blueberries
    12 fresh strawberries, halved
    4 large fresh basil leaves
    4 teaspoons sugar
    1 750-milliliter bottle sparkling wine, such as Prosecco, chilled
    Garnishes: lemon slices, strawberries

    Preparation:

    Stir together blueberries, halved strawberries, basil leaves, and sugar in a medium bowl; crush berries and leaves with a wooden spoon. Chill 30 minutes (to release juice from berries). Stir 1 cup chilled sparkling wine into fruit mixture, and pour through a fine wire-mesh strainer into a pitcher, discarding solids. Add remaining wine to pitcher. Garnish, if desired. Serve immediately, or chill up to 24 hours.

    2. Blackberry cobbler

    easy-blackberry-cobbler-l

      Ingredients:

      4 cups fresh blackberries
      1 tablespoon lemon juice
      1 large egg
      1 cup sugar
      1 cup all-purpose flour
      6 tablespoons butter, melted
      Whipped cream (optional)
      Garnish: fresh mint sprig

      Preparation

      Preheat oven to 375°. Place blackberries in a lightly greased 8-inch square baking dish; sprinkle with lemon juice. Stir together egg, sugar, and flour in a medium bowl until mixture resembles coarse meal. Sprinkle over fruit. Drizzle melted butter over topping. Bake at 375° for 35 minutes or until lightly browned and bubbly. Let stand 10 minutes. Serve warm with whipped cream, if desired. Garnish with fresh mint sprig, if desired.

      For a neat presentation, bake for the same amount of time in 6 (8-oz.) ramekins on an aluminum foil-lined baking sheet.

      3. Berry-licious summer salad

      fresh-berry-salad-l

        Ingredients:

        8 cups mixed salad greens
        2 cups fresh blueberries
        1/2 cup crumbled Gorgonzola or blue cheese
        1/4 cup chopped and toasted walnuts or pecans
        Bottled vinaigrette

        Preparation

        Toss together first 4 ingredients; drizzle with desired amount of vinaigrette, tossing gently to coat.

        Note: For testing purposes only, we used Newman’s Own Light Raspberry & Walnut vinaigrette.

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        4. Nice Berry Cobbler

        fresh-berry-cobbler-l

          Ingredients:

          1 cup sugar, divided
          1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
          6 cups fresh berries (raspberries, blueberries, blackberries)
          1 1/2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
          1 cup all-purpose flour
          3/4 cup self-rising yellow cornmeal mix
          1/3 cup butter, melted and slightly cooled
          1 cup milk

          Preparation:

          1. Combine 1/3 cup sugar and 1 1/2 Tbsp. cornstarch in a small bowl. Combine berries, cornstarch mixture, and lemon rind in a large bowl until well blended; spoon berry mixture into a lightly greased 2-qt. baking dish.

          2. Combine flour, cornmeal mix, and remaining 2/3 cup sugar in a medium bowl. Stir in butter and milk until blended. Gently spread batter evenly over berry mixture.

          3. Bake at 350° for 40 to 45 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center of topping comes out clean. Serve warm.

          5. Strawberry mint-pie

          creamy-strawberry-mint-pie-l

            Ingredients:

            1/2 (18-oz.) package reduced-fat cream-filled chocolate sandwich cookies (about 22 cookies)
            2 tablespoons butter, melted
            1 qt. fat-free or low-fat strawberry frozen yogurt
            1 (16-oz.) package fresh strawberries, hulled
            2 tablespoons powdered sugar
            2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
            Garnishes: fresh strawberry slices, edible flowers, Strawberry Sauce

            Preparation:

            1. Preheat oven to 350°. Process cookies and butter in a food processor until finely chopped. Firmly press mixture on bottom and up sides of a lightly greased 9-inch springform pan. Bake 10 minutes. Cool completely on a wire rack (about 30 minutes).

            2. Let frozen yogurt stand at room temperature 20 minutes or until slightly softened.

            3. Process strawberries, powdered sugar, and mint in food processor until strawberries are pureed, stopping to scrape down sides as needed.

            4. Place frozen yogurt in a large bowl; cut into large (3-inch) pieces. Fold strawberry mixture into yogurt until smooth. Spoon mixture into prepared crust. Freeze 3 hours or until firm. Let stand at room temperature 15 minutes before serving. Garnish, if desired.

            6. Raspberry buttercream icing

            raspberry-buttercream-frosting-l

              Ingredients:

              1/2 cup butter, softened
              1/2 cup fresh raspberries
              1 teaspoon vanilla extract
              1/8 teaspoon salt
              1 (16-oz.) package powdered sugar

              Preparation:

              1. Beat first 4 ingredients at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy.

              2. Gradually add powdered sugar, beating at low speed until blended and smooth after each addition.

              Note: Be sure to wash and thoroughly dry raspberries before adding to frosting.

              7. Strawberry-Spinach Salad

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              strawberry-salad-l

                Ingredients:

                1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
                2 (6-oz.) bags baby spinach
                1 (16-oz.) container strawberries, quartered
                1 (4-oz.) package crumbled blue cheese
                1/2 cup sliced toasted almonds
                Bottled red wine vinaigrette
                Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

                Preparation:

                1. Toss together red onion and next 4 ingredients in a large bowl. Drizzle with red wine vinaigrette; sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.

                Note: For a tasty flavor combination, replace the almonds, blue cheese, and red wine vinaigrette with pecans, goat cheese, and balsamic vinaigrette.

                8. Lemon-Raspberry Muffins

                lemon-raspberry-muffins-l

                  Ingredients:

                  2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided
                  1/2 cup sugar
                  2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
                  1/2 teaspoon salt
                  1 (8-ounce) container lemon yogurt
                  1/2 cup vegetable oil
                  2 large eggs
                  1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
                  1 (6-ounce) package fresh raspberries (about 1 1/4 cups) or 1 (6-ounce) package frozen raspberries, unthawed
                  3 tablespoons sugar
                  1 tablespoon cold butter or margarine

                  Preparation:

                  1, Combine 2 cups flour, 1/2 cup sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl; make a well in center of mixture.

                  2. Stir together yogurt and next 3 ingredients; add to dry ingredients, stirring just until moistened.

                  3. Toss together 2 tablespoons flour and raspberries; fold into batter. Spoon into lightly greased muffin pans, filling two-thirds full.

                  4. Combine remaining 2 tablespoons flour and 3 tablespoons sugar; cut butter into mixture with a pastry blender or fork until crumbly. Spoon evenly over batter in muffin pans.

                  5. Bake at 375° for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden. Remove muffins from pans immediately, and cool on wire racks.

                  Note: Blueberries may be substituted for raspberries.

                  9. Blackberry-Apple Cake

                  blackberry-apple-upside-down-cake-l

                    Ingredients:

                    3/4 cup butter, softened and divided
                    1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
                    1/4 cup honey
                    2 large Gala apples, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
                    1 cup fresh or frozen blackberries*
                    1 cup granulated sugar
                    2 large eggs
                    1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
                    1 teaspoon baking powder
                    1/2 cup milk
                    1 teaspoon vanilla extract

                    Preparation:

                    1. Preheat oven to 350°. Melt 1/4 cup butter in a lightly greased 9-inch round cake pan (with sides that are at least 2 inches high) over low heat. Remove from heat. Sprinkle with brown sugar; drizzle honey over brown sugar. Arrange apple slices in concentric circles over brown sugar mixture, overlapping as needed; sprinkle with blackberries.

                    2. Beat granulated sugar and remaining 1/2 cup butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until blended. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating until blended after each addition.

                    3. Stir together flour and baking powder. Add flour mixture to sugar mixture alternately with milk, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat at low speed just until blended after each addition. Stir in vanilla. Spoon batter over blackberries in pan.

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                    4. Bake at 350° for 45 to 50 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack 10 minutes. Carefully run a knife around edge of cake to loosen. Invert cake onto a serving plate, spooning any topping in pan over cake.

                    Note: 1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries may be substituted.

                    10. Strawberry-Fromage Blanc Tartlets

                    strawberry-formage-tartlets-l

                      Ingredients:

                      1 (6-oz.) container fromage blanc
                      1 large egg
                      4 tablespoons honey
                      1 tablespoon orange liqueur
                      1 tablespoon lemon juice
                      Pinch of nutmeg
                      2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
                      2 (1.9-oz.) packages frozen mini-phyllo pastry shells
                      1 cup balsamic vinegar
                      1/2 pt. fresh strawberries, chopped
                      2 tablespoons sugar

                      Preparation:

                      1. Preheat oven to 350°. Process first 6 ingredients in a food processor until smooth. Slowly sift in flour; process until blended.

                      2. Spoon 1 heaping teaspoonful mixture into each phyllo shell. Place on a baking sheet.

                      3. Bake at 350° for 10 minutes or until set.

                      4. Meanwhile, cook balsamic vinegar in a large saucepan over medium heat 10 minutes or until reduced to 1/4 cup. Cool completely (about 30 minutes).

                      5. Toss strawberries with sugar. Spoon strawberries over tartlets; drizzle with balsamic reduction. Serve immediately.

                      11. Vanilla-Champagne Soaked Fruit

                      vanilla-champagne-soaked-fruit-l

                        Ingredients:

                        1 (750-milliliter) bottle Champagne or sparkling wine
                        3/4 cup sugar
                        1 vanilla bean, split (1 Tbsp. vanilla extract may be substituted. Stir in with mint.)
                        1 (1-oz.) package fresh mint, chopped
                        1 cantaloupe, halved
                        1 pt. fresh raspberries
                        1 large orange, peeled and sectioned
                        1/2 honeydew melon, peeled and chopped (about 4 cups)
                        Garnishes: chopped fresh mint, vanilla bean pod

                        Preparation:

                        1. Bring first 3 ingredients to a boil in a 3-qt. saucepan over high heat; boil, stirring occasionally, until sugar is dissolved (about 4 to 5 minutes). Reduce heat to medium, and cook 10 minutes or until mixture is reduced by half. Remove from heat, and stir in mint. Let stand 5 minutes.

                        2. Pour mixture through a fine wire-mesh strainer into a bowl, discarding mint. Scrape seeds from vanilla bean into bowl; whisk until blended. Reserve vanilla bean pod for garnish.

                        3. Cut 1 cantaloupe half into 10 thin wedges. Cut 2 thin wedges from remaining half of cantaloupe; reserve remaining cantaloupe for another use. Place cantaloupe, raspberries, orange sections, and honeydew in a 13- x 9-inch baking dish; pour warm syrup over fruit. Cover and chill 3 to 24 hours. Remove fruit from syrup using a slotted spoon. Arrange on a serving platter. Serve syrup with fruit. Garnish, if desired.

                        12. Strawberry-Chicken Salad

                        strawberry-chicken-salad-l

                          Ingredients:

                          4 skinned and boned chicken breast halves
                          Raspberry Vinaigrette, divided
                          8 cups mixed salad greens
                          1 quart strawberries, sliced
                          2 pears, sliced
                          2 avocados, peeled and sliced
                          1/2 small sweet onion, diced
                          1/2 cup pecan halves, toasted

                          Preparation:

                          1. Combine chicken and 1/2 cup Raspberry Vinaigrette in a large zip-top freezer bag. Seal and chill 1 hour.

                          2. Remove chicken from marinade, discarding marinade.

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                          3. Grill, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat (350° to 400°) 4 minutes on each side or until done. Let chicken stand 10 minutes; slice.

                          4. Place salad greens and next 5 ingredients in a large bowl, and gently toss. Divide mixture evenly between 4 serving plates; top with grilled chicken slices. Serve with remaining Raspberry Vinaigrette.

                          13. Blackberry Cocktail

                          blackberry-cocktail-l

                            Ingredients:

                            1 (0.75-oz.) package fresh mint sprigs
                            12 (1/4-inch-thick) cucumber slices
                            2 (6-oz.) packages fresh blackberries
                            3/4 cup fresh lime juice (about 3 limes)
                            8 to 12 tsp. turbinado sugar (Superfine or powdered sugar may be substituted.)
                            1 cup plus 2 Tbsp. gin
                            1 cup cold club soda
                            Crushed ice
                            Garnishes: cucumber slices, fresh blackberries, lime wedges, lemon mint sprigs $

                            Preparation:

                            Place first 5 ingredients in a large pitcher. Gently press mint leaves, cucumbers, and blackberries against side of pitcher with a wooden spoon to release flavors. Stir in gin and club soda. Serve over ice. Garnish, if desired.

                            14. Blackberry-Peach Coffee Cake

                            blackberry-peach-coffee-cake-l

                              Ingredients:

                              1/2 cup butter, softened
                              1 cup granulated sugar
                              2 large eggs
                              2 cups all-purpose flour
                              2 teaspoons baking powder
                              1/2 teaspoon salt
                              2/3 cup milk
                              2 teaspoons vanilla extract
                              2 cups peeled and sliced fresh firm, ripe peaches (about 2 large peaches, 7 oz. each)
                              1 cup fresh blackberries
                              Powdered sugar
                              Garnishes: fresh blackberries, sliced peaches

                              Preparation:

                              1. Preheat oven to 350°. Prepare Streusel Topping.

                              2. Beat butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy; gradually add granulated sugar, beating well. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating until blended after each addition.

                              3. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt; add to butter mixture alternately with milk, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat at low speed until blended after each addition. Stir in vanilla. Pour batter into a greased and floured 9-inch spring form pan; top with sliced peaches and blackberries. Pinch off 1-inch pieces of Streusel Topping, and drop over fruit.

                              4. Bake at 350° for 1 hour and 10 minutes to 1 hour and 20 minutes or until center of cake is set. (A wooden pick inserted in center will not come out clean.) Cool completely on a wire rack (about 1 1/2 hours). Dust with powdered sugar. Garnish, if desired.

                              15. Blueberry Salsa

                              blueberry-salsa-l

                                Ingredients:

                                2 cups coarsely chopped fresh blueberries
                                1 cup whole fresh blueberries
                                1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
                                3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
                                2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and minced
                                1/3 cup diced red bell pepper
                                1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

                                Preparation:

                                Toss together coarsely chopped fresh blueberries, whole fresh blueberries, fresh lemon juice, chopped fresh cilantro, seeded and minced jalapeño peppers, diced red bell pepper, and kosher salt in a large bowl. Serve immediately, or cover and chill 8 hours.

                                Information and pictures gathered from: Southern Living

                                Featured photo credit: A four bowls overflowing with summer berries like strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and blackberries. via shutterstock.com

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                                Last Updated on July 8, 2020

                                18 Benefits of Journaling That Will Change Your Life

                                18 Benefits of Journaling That Will Change Your Life

                                The act of writing in a journal often seems daunting or unnecessary to many people. Even authors who work on novels might shun the idea of daily diaries. What purpose does jotting down words on a regular basis do if not contributing to the next novel, play or song? I know from experience many benefits of journaling that I wish to share.

                                1. Understand Yourself Better

                                Though many people and even writers avoid keeping journals, I vow to do it more often. Not only do I desire to take up daily journaling but also I plan to do it with pen to paper.

                                Some of the benefits I’ve found from my more active days include finding myself in the sense of understanding what matters to me and what I want out of life. I’ve been incredibly fortunate to find a spouse who is my best friend and advocate in raising children. I attribute this and much more to what I learned about myself in keeping journals for years.

                                2. Keep Track of Small Changes

                                I’ll admit that I never got very far with my guitar lessons, but in writing in a journal, I have seen the ability to track small changes like those that come when you practice anything.

                                Those learning a musical instrument often fail to see the small improvements that come with regular practice. Writing won’t help you switch chords any faster, but it will help you to develop a better sense for language and grammar just by doing it.

                                3. Become Aware of What Matters

                                As you continue to write in a journal, following a stream-of-consciousness feel, you can look back on the topics that you chose to write about. Those issues and emotions that poured out of you will provide insight on to what matters most to you.

                                You may not even realize that you’re job is depressing you or that you want to spend more time with your kids until you look over your thoughts that you weren’t really thinking about.

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                                4. Boost Creativity

                                The idea that the brain and its neural activity across hemispheres encourages learning also shows up in increased creativity. Just like with learning an instrument, your increased activity will inspire your thoughts to connect and reconnect in different ways.

                                When I wrote in a journal, I often wrote poetry as well as just my thoughts as they came out. I started to hear poems more in my mind; so much so that I took to scrawling lines on napkins and finding metaphors in mundane activities.

                                You really are what you do, so writing helps grow more than being a writer. Writing boosts the way you communicate and structure language, which really is a creative process.

                                5. Represents Your Emotions in a Safe Environment

                                A journal is as private as it gets. You can lock it in a safe or tuck it under a pillow and no one will accidentally share it on social media or have an opportunity to “leave a comment.”

                                Write about your sorrow as much as your happiness and frustration and know that you don’t have to keep your emotions inside your body. You can put them on paper.

                                6. Process Life Experiences

                                When you take the time to look back over what you’ve written, be it a week or a year later, you will have the distance you need to more objectively interpret your raw feelings.

                                Everything from losing a job to losing a loved one can emerge in a new light for a fresh perspective. Figuring out how the benefits of journaling affect your perspective on life will create connection and increase creativity.

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                                7. Stress Relief

                                In combining the exercise inherent in fine motor coordination that comes from the act of writing with the emotional release of self expression, those who maintain a journal relieve stress.

                                Try it out. Go home and write about your day. Write about the traffic. Write about the coffee order the barista got wrong but you didn’t have time to change. See how you can physically purge some of that pent-up stress by putting it on paper.

                                8. Provide Direction

                                Though journaling is often conducted as an activity without much direction, it often provides direction.

                                One of the biggest benefits of journaling is that your chaotic thoughts merge to show a direction in which to head. Asking the right questions is the only way to achieve the best solutions, so look to your journal to find your way toward your next goal.

                                9. Solve Problems

                                Just as in practicing math problems, we all get better at finding hidden solutions through the act of processing.

                                Think of your next goal as X and solve your life problems by reading your journals as word problems. The benefit of journaling here is that you write, explore and process to recognize and then solve problems.

                                When life is too in-your-face, you have to step back to see reality. Living in the moment allows us to write in the moment and use that expression to solve problems.

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                                10. Find Relief From Fighting

                                Solving your problems only comes after time to process, recognize and strategize. Just as in the benefit of journaling where relief comes from the act of writing, relief from fighting comes when you decide to “sit this one out” and communicate one-way.

                                Fighting is only productive when the fighters care to communicate and find common ground. When the emotions are as high as the stress levels, writing will function as the best time out.

                                11. Find Meaning in Life

                                Journaling will show you why you are living, whether you are wallowing in things you wish to change or striving to make the changes. Your life will begin to take on new meaning and your own words will reveal the actions that got you where you are so that you can assess and pave a new path for your future.

                                12. Allow Yourself to Focus

                                Taking even a small amount of time out of every day will provide you with not only peace of mind but also increased focus. Taking a break to meditate in writing and journaling will sharpen your mental faculties.

                                13. Sharpen Your Spirituality

                                When we write, we allow all the energy and experiences to flow through us, which often provides further insight into our own spirituality. Even if your parents didn’t raise you to follow a specific religion, your thoughts will start to show you what you believe about the universe and your place in it.

                                14. Let the Past Go

                                I’ve mentioned a few examples where going back over your writing offers advice and direction, but the simply truth is that writing down our feelings can be the best way to let them go. We can choose to literally throw these pages away when they’re filled with negativity and hate.

                                15. Allow Freedom

                                Journaling is the perfect way to not only express yourself but to also experience the freedom of being who you are. Your books can stay private or you can publish them. Your freedom stems from your sense of self and your perception of your thoughts.

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                                16. Enhance Your Career

                                Again, the private act of pen-to-paper processing provides the benefits of journaling mentioned above, but you can also enhance your career when you take similar ideas and categorize, edit and publish them in an online blog.

                                Your thoughts will often be personal and express emotions, but another benefit of journaling is uncovering fresh ideas about your work.

                                17. Literally Explore Your Dreams

                                All the benefits I’ve mentioned explore ideas, thoughts and emotions, which is also what our dreams and nightmares do. Through writing down your dreams from the previous night, you can enhance your creativity as well as connect some of the metaphorical dots from the rest of your journal.

                                18. Catalog Your Life for Others

                                No one wants to think about dying, but we all die. Leaving a journal will act as a way to reconnect with family and friends left behind. The ideas you wish to keep personal while you process the life you’re living will serve to rekindle and inspire those who loved you through the process.

                                We consider our partners our life witnesses, but writing provides a tangible mark on the world.

                                Now that you’ve learned all the benefits of journaling, it’s time to start writing a journal:

                                Featured photo credit: Kelly Sikkema via unsplash.com

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