Plump and pleasing fresh blueberries have a berry-delicious flavor all their own. Whether you fancy this fruit plain or in baked goods, desserts or salads, take advantage of their peak seasonal availability. Fresh blueberries are mainly on the market from June through August.
Look for plump, fresh berries of good blue color with a waxy bloom. Rabbiteye types generally keep better in the refrigerator. You can expect 2 weeks plus just in an uncovered bowl. In a bowl covered with plastic wrap they will keep a month or longer Northern highbush type blueberries pick with a wet scar these do not keep as long so if you are buying them in the store instead of at the farm, avoid any baskets with leaky berries or with signs of fungus growing from berry to berry.
Fresh blueberries are a good source of vitamin C. They also contribute fiber, and are low in calories, providing about 82 calories in 1 cup. Blueberries are also low in sodium (9/mg. per 1 cup serving). Many consider blueberries to be a Neutriceutical. Recent research indicates that ½ cup of blueberries has the same level of antioxidant as 2 ¼ cups of broccoli. Anti oxidants protect your DNA and your collagen in your skin from free radicals. Much of the antioxidant power comes from anthocyanins that give them their distinctive color. Other research in rats suggests that blueberries improve short-term memory. Still other research suggests that blueberries block urinary tract infections and help eyesight. Conclusive proof in humans is lacking for these claims but medical experts agree that a diet high in fruits and vegetables is the step in promoting good health.
* Nutrition information on this page is consistent with values found in existing data banks; it does not necessarily apply to any specific lot or procedure.
Special note: Pack clean, dry fresh blueberries in freezer containers and freeze for later use in baking. Frozen blueberries can be used as fresh berries, since they do not lose texture with freezing.