Monday, 16 January 2012

Frozen or fresh?

I'm very fond of fruit salad at breakfast time, expecially one made with summer berries and mandarins in natural, unsweetened fruit juice. In winter, it becomes increasingly difficult (not to mention expensive) to include fruit salad in my healthy breakfast (Weetabix or porridge, fruit, tea).

Last week I decided to experiment using frozen fruit and was interested in scientific opinion about the difference between using fresh or frozen.

"With shipping and storage, fresh fruit can often sit around for as long as two weeks before it hits your supermarket. .....  During that time, it can lose a lot of its nutrients, especially vitamin C." In contrast, frozen fruit is often picked and frozen at the peak of freshness. It's also a better choice for concocting smoothies."

I knew this was the case with fish but was not sure about fruit. It seems that there are similar benefits in canned fruit, which pleases me as it's a bit labour-intensive to peel and pith fresh manadrins, even if you can get them. "Canned fruit sometimes retains more nutrients than fresh because it's picked fully ripe and then processed right away. Fresh fruit, on the other hand, may have to travel long distances from farm to your kitchen table. It may suffer from improper storage conditions, and precious nutrients may be destroyed along the way."

My fruit salad is made using Nature's Finest mandarins in juice (when I can get them, when not, it's mandarins and pineapple in juice) and Morrison's frozen summer berries. Only the strawberries lose their texture when defrosted and the blackberries give the mix a rich cassis flavour.

Mmmmmmmm.And it's good for you - bonus!