Friday Five: 5 Ways to Use Summer Berries
I love going berry picking in the summer time! The season has almost come to an end here in Ontario and if you're like me, you picked way too many again this year and are now struggling to use them all up before they go bad! For this week's Friday Five, I'm sharing 5 Ways to Use Summer Berries! Give them a try and let me know what you think!
1. Chia Jam
Chia jam is a great alternative to sugar-laden store-bought jams. It is sweetened only with the fruit itself and some honey, and you get the added fibre and protein from the chia seeds!
I love this recipe because it is so simple and quick, and can be used for so many things! My favorite is on toast with some nut butter, but you could also put it over ice cream , mix it into some plain yogurt or use it in baking.
1 cup berry of choice
1 tbsp. chia seeds
1 tbsp. water
Honey to taste (you likely won't need more than 1 tbsp. depending how sweet your berries are!)
Mash the berries with a fork
Stir in chia seeds, water and honey
Add mixture to a mason jar and seal the lid
Refrigerate for at least 1 hour until jam-like texture develops
It's easy to mix up your morning smoothies with fresh berries and new combinations! What I love about smoothies is that you can pack them full of nutrients and are an easy on-the-go meal! I also like to prep a few smoothies at a time, and just add the liquid in the morning when I'm ready to have it.
1.5 cups berries (one type or mixed - up to you!)
1 cup spinach
3 tbsp. hemp hearts
Water or almond milk to fill
Add all ingredients into a blender and process until smooth. Add ice if you like your smoothie super cold!
By now, you can probably tell that I love muffins! These raspberry spelt muffins are one of my all-time favorite recipes. The original recipe is from Oh She Glows (an awesome website for recipes if you haven't been!) and calls for blueberries. I also leave out the coconut sugar that she calls for as I find them plenty sweet with the bananas and maple syrup added.
2 ripe bananas, mashed
3/4 cup + 2 tbsp. almond milk or milk of choice
1 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
2 cups spelt flour (I buy mine at the Bulk Barn)
2 tsp. baking powder
1.5 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1 1/4 cups raspberries
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and place paper liners in a muffin tin
In a bowl, add mashed bananas, milk, vinegar, maple syrup and vanilla
Melt to coconut oil on the stove and add to the wet mixture once slightly cooled and set aside
In a large bowl, mix all dry ingredients together
Pour the wet ingredients into the dry mixture and fold until just combined (don't over-mix!)
Add the walnuts and raspberries to the mixture
Divide batter into muffin tins and bake for 24-26 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.
One of my favorite desserts is a crisp, but I don't like the fact that the typical recipe usually calls for TONS of sugar! This version is just as satisfying, PLUS you get the added benefits of the nuts, coconut oil and fruit!
1 cup large flake oats
1 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup ground almonds (almond flour)
2/3 cup coconut
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
1/3 cup pure maple syrup
3-4 cups fresh berries
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Combine oats, pecans, almond flour, coconut, salt and cinnamon in a large bowl
Add coconut oil and maple syrup and mix everything together
Place your fruit in the bottom of a greased baking dish and cover with the crisp mixture
Bake for 30-35 minutes until the crisp has browned slightly
Serve with coconut whipped cream, or vanilla ice cream!
5. Freeze Them!
So this one isn't really a recipe, but freezing your fresh berries is a great way to make sure they don't go to waste, and ensures a nice treat in the colder months when they aren't in season! To freeze them, rise all of your berries and spread them out on sheet pans. Pop them in the freezer overnight, and in the morning put them in containers or freezer bags to keep!