We’ve been living off berries for a few weeks now – that’s what I love about August. Most of the berries grow here in our backyard, but we also love to frequent pick-your-own farms. There’s something meditative about berry picking…I’ve become quite an expert over the years, I think.
Mostly its currants that grow in the backyard, they are easy to grow (up here in Ontario, Canada) and don’t mind cold, shade and lack of water. The bushes are over five years old and produced a plentiful harvest. It’s quite a chore to pick them all!
Currants, black and red, are definitely an acquired taste – they seem sour at first. But a perfectly ripe berry should be bright red or deep black, big, and soft. Some of them get so full they start to literally burst, still on the branch. A ripe black currant has thin skin and a slightly tart but sweet, almost kiwi like-like flavour and texture.
The benefits of these berries haven’t been overly studied, and are not too popular here in the west, maybe because of their sourness. However they are rich in antioxidants called anthocyanins, which possess potent anticarcinogenic properties. Black currants are also high in antioxidant vitamin C, omega-6 and surprisingly high in calcium among other minerals.
The other berry that was plentiful this year was gooseberry. A ripe gooseberry should be purple and not green, with a sweet, plum like flavour. Gooseberries are also extremely high in vitamin C, and a good source of vitamin A and B vitamins. Both currants and gooseberries are in the same family, and are helpful in lowering blood sugar.
You don’t have to use black currants or gooseberries in your pie, actually this pie is delicious with any fruit – just raspberries or just blueberries. Even peaches or strawberries will be delicious. A raw pie is a whole lot easier to make, more nutritious and brimming with enzymes.
- 1 cup walnuts (can also use other nuts such as almonds)
- 1 tbsp unpasteurized, unfiltered honey (or preferred sweetener)
- 2 cups mixed berries (I used black currants, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and gooseberries)
- 1 heaping tbsp unpasteurized honey