Thinking of spring, which is rich in colours and scents, we wish we were taking a stroll in the open air, whether in parks and woods, to admire nature while it undergoes its natural change. Winter bare trees take on the several shades of foliage green, and flaunt an explosion of fragrant and bright flowers. And it is precisely this temperate climate that allows the growth of strawberry plants, whose fruits, esthetically pleasing and just as good to eat, are charactised by an intense and tempting colour! However, besides being tasty, strawberries also have a series of beneficial properties for the body that we will discover together.
Strawberries are the fruits of the homonymous plant belonging to the genus Fragaria, which either grows spontaneously in the woods or is cultivated.
The many varieties grown can be distinguished by the shape of the fruit, whether small or big, as well as by its colour and flavour. Fragaria vesca, with its more or less large red fruits, is the most common variety in Italy. The fruit ripening covers a period which goes from April to June and, in some regions of northern Italy, continues until July or August.
Rich in water and fibres, strawberries contain different nutrients, such as iron, calcium, phosphorus, vitamins A, B1 and B2. Moreover, they have a high content of vitamin C which, besides contrasting cold-induced diseases, stimulates blood circulation and facilitates the iron absorption by our body. They have an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effect, and help to counteract the harmful effects of cholesterol.
Thanks to their content of salicylic acid, strawberries have a positive effect on blood pressure and fluidity. They are also diuretic, depurative and low in calories.
Some tips for choosing the best strawberries
Nowadays, many are the strawberries commercially available and present all the year round. Obviously, they are not identical. Caution and special attention paid at the moment of purchase will help you choose the sweet and tasty ones! First of all, due to the fact that spring is the season when this fruit spontaneously grow and is thus tastier, it is essential to wait for this period to arrive. Since transport times are shorter than those from foreign countries, it is advisable to buy our home-grown strawberries, which have certainly been collected more recently.
Pay attention to the price! If their cost is too low, quality is not guaranteed. Whether small or big, what is important is that they are compact and have a uniform red colour.
How to taste them?
This fruit with many beneficial powers is very versatile in the kitchen; this is why it is a suitable ingredient for multiple preparations. If you love slightly sour flavours, you can eat strawberries alone or sweetened with sugar. They are excellent for preparing tasty fruit salads, seasoned with sugar, lemon, and coated with whipped cream. Fruit salads can also be enriched by other types of fruit, such as apples, kiwis, pineapples and other berries. They are excellent to fill or decorate cakes or omelettes, as well as to prepare pastries, tiramisu cakes, pies, ice creams, smoothies, and jams. Moreover, they can be used to prepare a syrup, the so-called strawberry sauce, used to moisten sponges for cakes and roulades, and to soak ladyfingers when it comes to making tiramisu. You’re really spoilt for choice!
At the restaurant Il Piccolo Mondo, after enjoying a rich meat or fish meal, you will be able to refresh yourself with a tempting, seasonal fruit tray, where strawberries are the queens! We are waiting for you!
For reservations, please call us at +39 06 42016034.