A Bit About the berries…
Also known as Rubus idaeus, the raspberry belongs to the same botanical family as the rose and the blackberry. They began to be cultivated in Europe around the 1600s and are one of our most traditional fruit and not to mention their many health benefits. They’re reputed to decrease diabetes and heart disease and it’s also suggested they can boost the metabolism.
Did you know? Raspberries come in all sorts of colours! Raspberries can be red, purple, gold or black in colour. However, our raspberries from Tibbs farm over in Udimore in leafy East Sussex, are the deep red Scottish variety, Glenclover. With a delicious depth of flavour you get from the freshly picked fruit.
The loganberry on the other hand is definitely different.. It is actually a hybrid fruit, named after its creator – James Harvey Logan – these berries are a cross between a raspberry and a blackberry. The loganberry is generally slightly longer than the raspberry with a juicier and sharper flavour.
Loganberries and raspberries are both full of vitamins and and a boost to strengthen the immune system with their high vitamin C content.
How to store raspberries and loganberries
Remove any mouldy or mushy berries so mould doesn’t spread to others berries. Because berries are so delicate, do not wash them until right before you use them, or they can break down and quickly become mushy (this is why we don’t pick them in the rain). Then refrigerate unwashed berries, loosely covered, in a single layer, for up to 3 days.
Before using the berries, make sure to wash them properly. Do not rinse them under running water because the pressure can crush them. Instead, place the berries in a colander and dip them in a bowl of cold water. Gently swish the colander in the water, then allow the berries to drain. To dry the berries, after washing carefully spread the berries in a single layer on a tray or baking sheet lined with paper towels. Pat the berries dry with another paper towel.
If you want to freeze the berries, place them on a paper towel to remove excess water. Then neatly arrange them and place them on a baking sheet. Pop them into the freezer for a few hours, then transfer the frozen berries into freezer bags. You can freeze berries for up to 12 months.
Food that pair with raspberries and loganberries
In savoury dishes, raspberries go well with herbs and spices such as chive, mint, pepper or cinnamon. You can also try crushing the berries in salad dressing or just whole in a delicious salad of rocket, spinach leaves, smoked chicken and mozzarella.
And last but not least! Raspberries pair perfectly with chocolate!
Loganberries can be eaten the same way as raspberries. However they are more and usually need to be sweetened before eating. They can be stewed or baked, pureed or added to drinks, sauces, ice-creams and sorbet. They can also be used for jam, jelly, tarts, flans, pies, coulis and mousses. Or mix the loganberries with other fruit such as raspberries or blackberries, banana or cream to make smoothies or ice creams.
Here is a delicious recipe for a Raspberry Layer Cake that we found for you, which we are trying out this weekend, since raspberries are not around for long.
Raspberry Layer Cake
For the cake:
- 200g. caster sugar
- 200g. softened butter
- 4 eggs, beaten
- 200g self-raising flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- icing sugar, to decorate
For the syrup:
- 85g. caster sugar
- 50 ml. Almond liqueur (or use our local Walnut Liqueur)
For the filling:
- 284ml. tub double cream
- 250g. tub mascarpone
- 3 tbsp caster sugar
- 150g. punnet raspberries
Heat oven to 190c/fan 170c/gas 5. Butter 2 x 20cm sandwich tins and line each with a circle of baking parchment. In a large bowl, beat together all the cake ingredients until you have a smooth, soft mixture. Spoon the mixture equally into the two tins, smoothing over the top of each with the back of the spoon. Bake in the oven for 20 mins until golden and the cake springs back when gently pressed. Turn the cakes onto a cooling rack.
- Heat the sugar, 2 tbsp water and Almond liqueur together until the sugar has dissolved. Leave to cool, about 10 mins. Use a large serrated knife to cut each cake in half. Brush the syrup all over all four pieces of cake with a pastry brush.
- For the filling, whip the cream until it forms soft peaks. Beat the mascarpone and caster sugar in a large bowl to loosen, then fold in the cream and mix together until smooth.
- Spoon a third of the cream mixture over one of the cake halves. Scatter over some of the fruit (you don’t want to cover the cake), then sandwich another half on top. Spread with cream and fruit as before and top with another half of cake and more cream and berries. Lay the final cake half on top. Gently press down, then wrap tightly in cling film and leave in the fridge overnight. Before serving, carefully remove clingfilm and dust with icing sugar to decorate.