This year’s abundant June rains have produced amazing crops of wild berries.
Saskatoons weigh down the branches and the soon to be ripe Elderberries. Wild blueberries in Larch Hills are not far behind. Make a family day of it and fill your tummy, freezer, and pantry with nature’s most valuable berries that score top marks on the ORAC charts (more about ORAC later)...
Just a word to the wise about Elderberries:Do not eat fresh elderberries or lick your fingers while you are picking. The leaves and under ripe berries are toxic! Fully ripe elderberries must be cooked and strained to make juice or jellies in sealed
jars or fermented. I’ve been told that they make a very respectable wine. You can visit Jed and Louise at their Elderberry Farm in Salmon Arm to get a taste of their expertly handcrafted juices and elderberry Cordial. This wonderful immune booster at the end of summer is reported to slow down or diminish the duration and severity of a cold or the flu. The ORAC values are developed by the National Institute of Health and is described as follows: The ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) unit, ORAC value, or “ORAC score” is a method of measuring the in vitro antioxidant capacity of different foods and supplements. These numbers are just numbers and although valuable, how the body utilizes these free radical “Pac Men” for rejuvenation and good health continues to have a mysterious side. I just know that berries are delicious, easily absorbed and full of energetic vibrancy. You can find a complete list of 500 different foods on www.superfoodworldly.com for some surprising results.
In the mean time, we are picking a bumper crop of black currants (ORAC 9000), red currants and raspberries. They are superb for green smoothies in the winter months and entertain ‘our’ children as they fill their bellies and mash them up for their version of a Rawsome Jam!