Berries

The urge to conform is even present in fruit, where “fake berries” try desperately to join the in-crowd as “true berries.” Real berries such as avocados, tomatillos, and red currants are fleshy, seed-filled fruits produced from a single ovary, but aggregate fruits such as strawberries, blackberries, and boysenberries have multiple ovaries. Guests stepped into our dining room in July for a tasty version of Maude Mythbusters, where we shed light on popular fruit misconceptions and honoured real berries and sneaky wanna-berries alike.

Curtis Stone Maude Berries

While berries’ identities may be complex, their appeal is no mystery. They have so much inherent sweetness and are the perfect little things to get you going at any point in the day. Just-picked, ripe, local berries burst with natural flavour, but ones grown in a hothouse and flown in from far out lands are not ideal. Here at Maude, we use berries grown and picked in California to give you the freshest fruits and pay homage to our native farmers.

Curtis Stone Maude Berries

In California, we’re lucky to take advantage of the different fruits that thrive in our cool, coastal climate. While the most common raspberries are red, we switched things up a little bit by using local golden raspberries in our dishes this month. These fruits, which grow in the glorious West Coast sun, have the same characteristics as other raspberries and are light and tasty. Guests also met the raspberries’ cousins, olallieberries, which are genetically one-third red raspberry and two-thirds blackberry. They were developed in 1949 in Oregon but are primarily grown in California. Olallieberries are larger and sweeter than blackberries, and several Southern California producers make preserves to ship all over the world.

Curtis Stone Maude Berries

In addition, we gave a little love to huckleberries and white mulberries. Bountiful in Northern California, huckleberries were once popular among local Native American tribes. The plant matures slowly, taking up to fifteen years to produce the berries - they’re perfect proof that good things come to those who wait! Unlike huckleberries, white mulberries are originally native to Asia but were introduced to colonial America for the silkworm culture and hybridized with native red mulberries. Once considered the “king of the tree crops,” these trees’ fruits burst with a tart, sweet flavour like that of grapefruit – delicious!

Curtis Stone Maude Berries

Throughout July, we took berries to a new height – just like the eight-foot tall huckleberry trees whose scrumptious, Vitamin-C packed fruit we utilized in the kitchen. And, as if the fruits’ flavour wasn’t amazing enough, berries are high in fiber, boost memory and heart health, and lower blood pressure. Talk about a sweet deal!

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