Who’s Your MAQ Daddy? :^)

If Kale is King of the Greens, Maquis are King of the Berries…at least for now. 😀  These beauties  are black as seen in this photo I took in the sunshine. I’m not sure if they are technically a black — could be a purple, I imagine.

The reigning “superfruit” du jour —  I won’t bother going into its super-awesomeness: simply Bing it for all the panacean detail you can handle. These are availble dry because like acai, mangosteen or any other superfruit, it will not survive traveling thousands of miles fresh.

Maqui is making appearances in beverages and snacks at break-neck speed, of course; but I think it would be most healthful to get them freeze-dried as fresh as possible. I rely on Mountain Rose Herbs for superior quality of whatever I can get there, and these Maquis are no  exception. They are available on some sites — mostly raw stores — and a few healthy-type food stores( like Whole Foods), may have the powdered Navitas brand in the raw-food sections.

Back to black  for a sec — Black, like purple and blue foods are available but not as abundant as reds, for example. Although “black foods” were all the rage, circa 2007, they are still gaining in newsworthiness for their high-nutrient, anti-cancer compounds. Remember black garlic? Simply fermented garlic which rendered it more nutritious (like a lot of fermented foods [such as my cultured veggies 🙂 ] ) The black foods are higher in nutrients amongst even their cousins, such as black sesames are more nutritious than the brown.

I recently had some black radishes…

and Ooh, I did not like them. Very bitter. And…

…the black was only on the outside, and the skin was very tough and, for me, inedible — at least the ones I got. I don’tknow if a different kind may have thinner/edible skin. My guess is that, the powerful “black” nutrients are contained in the skin. Of course,  the radish, itself, is a powerful cruciferous on its own.

I guess I eat my fair share of black foods — black sesame, black mushrooms, olives, berries, Nori…black beans are okay, but I haven’t eaten those in years…black vinegar, pepper… Hm, what else?

I wonder if chia seeds are considered a black food? *Love* me, my chias! 😀

Backy to the Maquis 😉

I tasted one and, hm, not really impressed. These are dry — and I mean, dry. They are not like raisins or the dethroned gojis; they are gritty and sand-like. Not too pleasant.

And, oddly, not much flavor. Part of the reason for this, I think is…

These are teeny tiny! I would say the size of juniper berries or allspice berries, or even whole black peppercorns! So to get an idea of the flavor you would have to pop a few more :).

I was also shocked that a “serving” is 1 teaspoon!

But that’s quite a few in one teaspoon.

Now, what I found really fascinating, is that, when I put it in my GJGS, the flavor was delicious!

The berries’ flavor absolutely came through. It’s definitely a distinct flavor, but sort of blueberry-blackberry-ish + concord grapes, if I had to liken it to something — nothing too foreign.

By the way, that is the only fruit (aside from lemon) I put in my GJGS in order to judge the flavor, and I still was able to taste it. Interesting! I would have to say it’s most likely the lemon I put in my GJGS’s since citrus makes flavors pop and brings out the sweetness, too. Lemon or lime goes into all my GJGS’s.

Verdict: I’m keeping these in my berries rotation 😀

Definitely a keeper!

What other black foods can you think of?

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  1. August 31, 2011 at 3:28 am

    Oh, it’s really hard to think of other black fruit … Do you know black salsifies?


    Well, there are black only from the outside, but that at least … 😉

    • Strix said,

      August 31, 2011 at 6:22 am

      Ah, I didin’t think of salsify. I think I’ve tasted it once…or maybe that was another funky looking thing — oh, no, I’m thinking of burdock root!

      I don’t think I’ve had salsify…or maybe I have and don’t know it. What dish is it usually in that may be familiar? I’m pretty sure I haven’t used it. I think I’ll pick up some and see what it can do! Thanks for the inspiration 🙂

      I just thought of one — black grapes!

      • August 31, 2011 at 11:57 am

        A traditional dish I know is that salsifies are cooked in a creamy sauce. (Not my cup of tea, though – the creamy sauce, that is.) Basically, you can just use them just like carrots or parsnips – cook them, bake them, and you can also eat them raw in a salad. If I remember correctly, they tend to be a little slimy when you peel them, so you could also cook them with the peel and peel them afterwards.

        A friend of mine (her boyfriend is from Mexico) told me today that some Mexican dishes call for black chili. 🙂

        • Strix said,

          August 31, 2011 at 1:36 pm

          Oh, okay, that gives me an idea, thanks.
          Whoa, black chile! Awesome 🙂

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