National Strawberry Day

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The garden strawberry is a hybrid species that is cultivated worldwide for its fruit, the strawberry. The fruit is widely appreciated for its characteristic aroma, bright red color, juicy texture, and sweetness. It is consumed in large quantities, either fresh or in prepared foods such as preserves, fruit juice, pies, ice creams, and milkshakes. Artificial strawberry aroma is also widely used in many industrialized food products. The garden strawberry was first bred in Brittany, France, in the 1750s.

Five Fun Facts:

  1. The strawberry is not classified by botanists as a true berry. True berries, such as blueberries and cranberries have seeds inside. The strawberry, however has its dry, yellow "seeds" on the outside (each of which is actually considered a separate fruit).
  2. On the average, there are 200 tiny seeds in every strawberry. If all the strawberries produced in California this year were laid berry to berry, they'd wrap around the world 15 times. That's enough strawberries to provide every U.S. household with 12 pint baskets.
  3. The strawberry belongs to the genus Fragraria in the rose family, along with apples and plums. The name of the scientific classification was derived from the Old Latin word for fragrant.  The modern Italian word for strawberry is still "Fragola".
  4. Strawberries are low in calories: one cup of unsweetened strawberries has only 55 calories.
  5. Fresh juice from sieved strawberry pulp has a cooling effect on feverish patients.

Five Strawberry Recipes:

  1. Strawberry Shortcake- Besides succulent fresh, ripe strawberries, the key to a great strawberry shortcake lies in the quality of the biscuit. And this one is top-notch. These tender, sweet buttermilk biscuits are made with a blend of cake flour and whole-wheat flour and lightened by substituting reduced-fat cream cheese for some of the butter. As a delicately tangy alternative to whipped cream, we use a blend of cream and reduced-fat sour cream.
  2. Strawberry Ice Cream-Home-made ice cream made with fresh fruit is always more delicious, and far healthier, than store-bought. This recipe is so easy, and so rewarding that I make it over and over again each spring.
  3. Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp - I love homey fruit desserts. Nothing says comfort like the smell of a fruit crisp baking in the oven. This dessert can be made for Shabbat and can be served cold or warmed for Shabbat lunch.
  4. Strawberry-Orange Muffins- Streusel-topped strawberry-orange muffins are perfect for brunch or a light snack. We love the combination of strawberry and orange in this sweet breakfast muffin with a streusel topping. For a less conventional (but equally delicious) twist, try the basil variation. The hint of basil complements the fruity berries wonderfully.
  5. Homemade Strawberry Jam - Easy to do and nothing tastes better than homemade!

Click for more Strawberry Recipes.

Nutritional Information for a half cup of strawberry ice cream:

Calories: 127  
Fat: 6 g
Carbohydrates: 18  g
Cholesterol: 19 mg
Sodium:  40 mg
Protein: 2  g