Native throughout most of Europe and also grown in New England, the barberry has elongated bright red berries which, because of their high acidity, are seldom eaten raw. Some varieties produce white or yellow fruit. Ripe barberries are used in pies, preserves and syrups; they can also be candied. Green berries are sometimes pickled and used as a relish.
From The Food Lover's Companion, Fourth edition by Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst. Copyright © 2007, 2001, 1995, 1990 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.