Field Notes Blog
My daughter Grace is seven and like many kids can be a picky eater. Now that school is out for the summer, my wife and I decided that Grace would help with the weekly grocery shopping. We thought if she saw delicious fruits and vegetables in the store and had some input on what we brought home, she would be more likely to choose a healthier snack!
Our first trip seemed to be pretty successful; Gracie selected blueberries and promised to eat them during the week. The first couple days were great! She ate them plain, on cereal, and in yogurt. Just as I was thinking about nominating myself for ‘Father of the Year’, Gracie decided to have a change of heart and refused to eat them.
It was a crazy morning so I just let it slide and let her pick something else, but this occurred again the next day and I wasn’t going to let it slide again! I grabbed a handful of the blueberries and shoveled them into my mouth to show her how good they were, boy was that a mistake! I quickly learned that I did not store my blueberries correctly and they were going bad. I had been keeping them on the counter next to some apples and oranges.What a fail… since then i have now learned how easy proper storage can be! The key is too refrigerate the blueberries, which will ensure a longer shelf-life! Check out Naturipe’s tips on storing blueberries, it sure did help me!
The following week we left for our annual summer vacation in my childhood state of Oregon. My parents grow blueberries in their backyard and I knew they would be just hitting the peak season just like Naturipe blueberries. I hoped this would be a second chance at introducing blueberries to my daughter. Her grandparents showed her how to correctly select and pick the blueberries at the height of perfection. After picking, they taught her how to wash a few berries for immediate enjoyment and how you should dry the rest and store in a cold place (just above freezing) to maximize the shelf life. Proper blueberry storage should allow you to store the berries for up to 14 days!
Vacations always make healthy eating a challenge, so the fresh blueberries became the perfect guilt free snack. Blueberries are packed with more antioxidants than spinach, oranges, grapefruits, cherries, or apples. In addition to a great snack, we found several great blueberry recipes from Naturipe Farms. I posted the Blueberry Electric Lemonade, Broiled Salmon with Blueberry Basil Sauce, and a Blueberry, Onion, and Arugula Salad on my blog which were all inspired by Naturipe recipes.
Sadly our Oregon vacation is over and we can no longer simply walk outside and pick fresh blueberries. However, we are lucky enough to have found fresh Naturipe Blueberries at our local Costco and Whole Foods in Chicago. Naturipe is available at many different retailers across the county, check out their complete list of retailers so you can enjoy peak of season berries!