I can't think of a holiday that's as feel-good as the Fourth of July. You've got family and friends, cold beer, hot dogs and hamburgers, and of course all that pursuit of happiness to celebrate. This year put the cherry on top with a slew of very berry desserts (including one honorary cherry pie). These recipes are unabashedly red, white, and blue, thanks to strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, and loads of whipped cream. Take your pick of lemony berry cupcakes, a flag cake with a patriotic surprise inside, and a naturally colored layered jello mold. Have a peek inside to choose a recipe to help you celebrate America's birthday in delicious style.
Berry Season Brings the Best Dessert
Berry season, that stretch of weeks between mid-June and early August, leaves us all in a mad dash to consume as many of these jewels of the summer as possible. Just as it's hitting peak season, the Fourth of July comes around and practically begs to be celebrated with that treasure trove of fruit. So we're obliging with these desserts, chock-full of berries and very red, white, and blue.
Before you dive in, brush up on your berry best practices. Below are our tips for handling berries so they're tastier, last longer, and ready for turning into a feast of summer desserts.
- The best ways to store strawberries: The middle of the container.
- 3 berries you should wash right away: When to wash berries all depends on the variety you have handy.
- Keep your berries in peak condition: When washing berries, consider using a hot water bath or a solution of vinegar and water, and then rinsing under cool water.
- Store berries in the right spot: As for where those berries should live, it depends on a few factors, the most important of which is how long you think they'll be around for.
- Consider freezing your berries: Whether you enjoy them now or six months from now, nothing beats fresh berries. However, if you've got a giant haul of berries on your hands, the best place for some of them just might be the freezer.
- Don't forget the overripe fruit: Just because those once-fresh berries have taken a turn for overripe pastures, it doesn't mean it's time to get rid of them. There's more life in those wrinkled berries, so think twice before you toss them.
- Know which berries come with built-in freshness protection: Bloom, which is a natural coating produced by the berries that acts as a protective shield against insects and bacteria, is a sign of berry freshness. Think of it as nature's preservative!