Berries (Blueberries, Blackberries, Raspberries)
How to choose: Blackberries and raspberries should be deeply colored; blueberries should have a slight frosty-white hue. Pass by blackberries and raspberries with hulls attached, a sign of premature picking. Check all fruit for mold, and inspect containers for stickiness or stains.
How to store: Pick through the berries and discard damaged or moldy ones. Place unwashed raspberries and blackberries in a single layer on a plate, cover loosely, and store in the refrigerator. Blueberries are sturdier and can be refrigerated in their container.
Shelf life: Unlike many other fruits, berries don’t ripen after picking, so they are best eaten right away. Blackberries and raspberries will last for two to three days; blueberries, up to a week.
Best uses: Berries are perfect eaten out of hand but are terrific cooked in pies, muffins, and pancakes. For a sweet-tart breakfast, snack, or dessert: Top a small dish of fresh ricotta with a mix of blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries, drizzle with honey, and sprinkle with toasted almonds.