Mulberry blackberries are low in calories and high in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants
- What are
- Nutritional values
- Use in the kitchen
Mulberry blackberries are “false fruits” that is infructescences of various mulberry species, including white mulberry, black mulberry and red mulberry. These imposing trees of the Moraceae family are not native to our area but were imported from the Asian continent for the breeding of silkworms. The production of silk was then almost completely abandoned and, with it, also the cultivation of mulberry trees.
Today the robust mulberry trees are still present for ornamental purposes in gardens and parks, including urban ones, where they allow good shading thanks to their thick and large foliage. Recognizing a mulberry is not at all difficult thanks to the remarkable fruit production, which occurs from late spring to summer, usually from May to July.
Black mulberry blackberries (Morus nigra) are fleshy, edible drupes, similar in appearance to blackberries but more elongated. The flavor of black mulberry blackberries is sweet and slightly acidic, very pleasant and appreciated by adults and children. There is also a variety of mulberry that produces white blackberries, with a flavor similar to black blackberries but more bland and slightly vanilla, so black mulberries are preferred. Fresh mulberry fruits are hardly found on the market, but if the trees grow in low-polluted areas, away from traffic and crops, it is possible to pick the fruits directly from the plant and enjoy them fresh immediately after harvesting or use them to prepare drinks, juices. , vitaminic flavored waters and jams.
Macronutrients and calories
One hundred grams of fresh black mulberry provide the body with few calories, about 43. The energy comes from:
- 9.8 grams carbohydrates
- 1.44 grams of protein
- 0.39 grams of fat
One serving of mulberry blackberries is equal to that of any other small fruit, i.e. 150 grams.
Vitamins and minerals
Like all fresh fruit, mulberry blackberries are also rich in vitamins, in particular vitamin C, mineral salts and molecules with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory action. Specifically, in one hundred grams of black mulberry blackberries we find:
- 0.101 mg of vitamin B2 (riboflavin)
- 0.620 mg of vitamin B3 (niacin)
- 0.050 mg of vitamin B6 (pyridoxine)
- 6 µg of folate
- 36.4 mg of vitamin C
- 25 IU of vitamin A
- 7.8 µg of vitamin K
- 194 mg of potassium
- 39 mg of calcium
- 18 mg of magnesium
- 10 mg of sodium
- 1.85 mg of iron
- 0.12 mg of zinc
- 60 µg of copper
- 0.6 µg of selenium
Black mulberry blackberries also provide alpha and beta carotene, precursors of vitamin A, which is especially important for night vision, as well as flavonoids (especially anthocyanins) and resveratrol. These molecules have a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory action and their intake helps to protect the body from damage caused by free radicals and to counteract inflammatory processes. Antioxidant and anti-inflammatory substances actually help slow down the aging process and prevent chronic diseases including cardiovascular diseases, neurodegenerative diseases and cancers.
Use in the kitchen
Mulberry blackberries are eaten fresh, immediately or shortly after harvesting. In fact, these are easily perishable fruits that cannot be stored for long. At breakfast or during snacks they can therefore be enjoyed as they are or by adding lemon juice and sugar even in fruit salad with strawberries, berries and other seasonal fruit such as peaches and melon. They are also very popular in natural yoghurt, even vegetable, or served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream at the end of a meal.
Blended or centrifuged, mulberry blackberries can be used to prepare juices rich in vitamins and mineral salts, excellent for quenching and refreshing during summer days. The mulberry smoothie can also be frozen to make popsicles, sorbets and slushes.
The mulberry jam on the other hand, in addition to being used in sweet recipes, lends itself to accompanying aged cheeses or meat dishes with a strong flavor.
- 1 kg of black mulberry blackberries
- 100 grams of sugar (optional)
- the juice and zest of one lemon
After having washed and dried the blackberries carefully, they should be placed in a bowl with the sugar, zest and lemon juice. Once all the ingredients have been mixed, they are left to macerate in a cool place for twenty-four hours. The next day it is transferred to a high-sided pot and cooked for about twenty minutes from boiling, over very low heat. While still hot, the jam must be poured into previously sterilized and hermetically sealed glass jars. In order for the vacuum to occur, the containers filled with the jam must be left to cool closed and upside down.
The consumption of mulberry blackberries should be avoided in cases of allergy or hypersensitivity to this fruit, if you have diabetes, if you are taking drugs to reduce cholesterol levels or if you are following therapies with antidepressants, benzodiazepines and barbiturates. Furthermore, mulberry blackberries should be consumed when they are in season and fully ripe and, in any case, it is not good to exceed in daily quantities.