Have you tried strawberry picking only to end up having a lot more than what you need? While freezing it for later use is fine, there is a better way to preserve strawberries—strawberry puree.
Strawberry puree is a mixture of sugar and strawberries. This technique was developed a long time ago to preserve an abundance of strawberries before they get a little squishy. With puree, the fruit will still taste great while maintaining its usefulness for other recipes. Jams, smoothies and ice creams are a few of the ways you can use strawberry puree.
If you have been dying to make your own puree, this article is for you. The instructions are easy to follow and I have tried it myself so I know it works. Read on and discover how you can make your own strawberry puree.
Strawberry Puree Nutritional Facts
There are a lot of strong arguments for making purees. According to Livestrong.com fruit purees are actually a good substitute for butter in baking when you want to reduce the calories. It doesn’t only lower the calories, it also adds fiber and flavor to your baked goodies.
If you’re introducing your baby to solid food, puree is a good place to start. Since it has a lot of vitamin B and C, it’s a great treat for babies older than nine months. In its fruit form, it can be a choking hazard for your little ones, but as a puree, its a safe and great way to introduce your baby to the taste of fruits.
Adults also benefit from the vitamin contents of strawberries. Just because we’re all grown-ups doesn’t mean we don’t need a good infusion of vitamins B and C. On the contrary, we actually do and we need a lot of it because these two vitamins are essential in keeping our well beings.
Since puree also contains water, it’s important to adjust the amount of liquid accordingly when you use it as a replacement in baking. It’s recommended to reduce the water by ¼ cup whenever you use it. And a cup of puree is also equal to 1 to 2 tablespoon of sugar in the recipe. That, of course, depends on how sweet you want the recipe to be.
Here are a few nutritional facts of strawberry puree:
- 40 calories per 1/4 cup
- 4 g carbohydrates
- 0.5 g fiber
- 2 g sugar
Having more fruits like strawberries in your diet has remarkable health benefits, whether you get it fresh or in the form of puree. Increasing the amount of fruits has the potential to save you from chronic diseases like stroke, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart attack, bone loss, high cholesterol, cancer and kidney stones.
Just like fresh fruits, purees contains a lot of antioxidants that can potentially boost the immune system and compensate for the existence of free radicals in our bodies which are known to damage cells.
A little consideration though, if you are a weight watcher, purees generally contain more calories and sugar compared to regular fruits. While it has fewer calories than butter when used as a substitute in baking, it does have more calories compared to fresh fruits so the usual caveat applies.
Steps in Making Strawberry Puree
Homemade strawberry puree is a marvelous treat. You can spoon it over ice cream and yogurt, swirl it through popsicles and milkshake, and stir it into cocktails. After you’ve read these steps, you now have no reason to throw away those excess fruits.
Step 1—Harvest the Strawberries: This might sound as simple as picking the strawberries from the stem but since you are going to make a puree, you have to remove the stem to the point that the white part appears.
When you slice the tops, you should not allow any part of the stem to remain in the fruit because it will affect the flavor of the finished product. Do this for the rest of the berries before continuing.
Step 2—Steam the strawberries if frozen or underripe: If your strawberries are ripe and not frozen, you ca skip this step. But if you’re working with fruits that are not so ripe or frozen, place it in the steamer for 3 minutes.
This will soften the fruits if it’s not so ripe and thaw it if frozen making it ready for the food processor. After that, drain the fruits and rinse with tap water in a colander to start the process of making puree.
Step 3—Slice in quarters: After removing all the stems, you can proceed with slicing the fruits in quarters. Doing this will ensure an easier time making your puree. You have to remember that making a puree is different from making a jam where you can allow some fruits to remain partially intact. With a puree, everything should be liquefied and slice it in smaller quarters help in that.
Step 4—Make your Puree: After quartering now is the time to make your puree. This is a relatively simple step and you can use a variety of tools for this—food processor, blender, smoothie maker just to name a few. Just place the strawberries into the machine of your choice and make the puree. After that, you have a delicious strawberry puree that you can use for a variety of recipes.
When the strawberries are really ripe, it will be very sweet and its a good idea to serve it plain without any sugar added. On the other hand, you can add sugar if the sweetness is not to your satisfaction.
If you have bought or harvested a lot of strawberries, making a puree is a good way to preserve it and keep it for next use. There are a lot of ways to use it for various recipes so you don’t have to wait until it gets a little squishy, or worst throw it away. If you follow the steps above, you can immediately make your own strawberry puree and save your fruits.
Aside from strawberries, you can follow these steps and make puree of almost any fruit that you get your hands on. It will have the same result but you will get a different flavor.
Do you have some experience making your own strawberry or any other fruit puree? Share your ideas in the comment section below.