Market Watch: Black Raspberries

Black raspberries are only in season for a short time (June and July) but if you can find them, make a homemade granita -- an easy, healthy summer dessert.

While black-raspberry ice cream may be the extent of your black-raspberry knowledge, these sweet and succulent berries (not to be confused with blackberries) do exist in the primitive form – you just won’t find them in most grocery stores.

Scout out your farmers’ market for deep violet raspberries hiding among the typical red varieties. While blackberries (a completely different variety of berry) are easy to come by, I only know of one local farm that grows black raspberries in my area. They’re only available for a short time (usually mid-June to late July). Use them for any raspberry recipe – trifle and salad dressing are just a few favorites. They make an incredibly special and refreshing granita.

Black Raspberry-Vanilla Granita

Serves: 6
1 pint black raspberries
4 cups of water
2 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
Whipped cream (optional)

Combine berries, sugar, water, and lemon juice into a large saucepan. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium and cook for 5 to 7 minutes until berries have broken down. Strain mixture through a fine mesh strainer (use a rubber spatula to press through). Transfer to a shallow glass container (such as a 9x13x2 inch baking dish); allow to cool slightly, then place in the freezer. Once the mixture begins to freeze, scrape with a fork to create ice crystals every 30 minutes until mixture is completely frozen. To serve, spoon into cups and top with a light dollop of whipped cream, if desired.

Nutrition Info Per Serving (does not include whipped cream)

Calories: 151
Total Fat: 0 grams
Saturated Fat: 0 grams
Total Carbohydrate: 39 grams
Protein: 1 gram
Sodium: 3 milligrams
Cholesterol: 0 milligrams
Fiber: 3 grams

Dana Angelo White, MS, RD, ATC, is a registered dietitian, certified athletic trainer and owner of Dana White Nutrition, Inc., which specializes in culinary and sports nutrition. See Dana's full bio »

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