What is Huckleberry?
Huckleberry otherwise called hurtleberry is the native fruit of North America. The fruit appear in various dark colors such as red, blue and black and each berry measures 5-10mm in diameter. The fruit is completely edible and possesses a unique sweet taste. These berries are used as a major flavoring agent in juice, tea, soup, pudding, pie, pancakes and jam. It is also used for treating pain and healing heart disease and infections.
Where Do Huckleberries Grow?
There are four species of huckleberry in the genus Gaylussacia, which are native to the eastern and southeastern United States, but these are not the berries to which we are referring.
Now that we know what they are, it might be prudent to inquire where huckleberries grow. Western huckleberries belong to the genus Vaccinium and found among the coniferous forests of the West Coast of the United States. The flowers and fruit of western huckleberries appear akin to those of high bush and low bush blueberries and are, indeed, Vaccinium species as well, but in a different taxonomic section (myrtillus) than other blueberries, as they produce single berries on new shoots. High and low bush blueberries produce berries on year old wood with a much greater yield. The most common of these is Vaccinium deliciosum, or cascade bilberry.
Health Benefits of Huckleberry
Due to the high levels of Antioxidants in Huckleberry, the benefits include:
- It is beneficial to the pancreas in digesting sugars and starches.
- Huckleberries are associated with lowering cholesterol; protecting against diabetes, heart diseases, glaucoma, varicose veins, cancer, hemorrhoids, and peptic ulcers.
- It improves your immune system and keeps your hair and skin healthy.
- It helps in treatment of all eye diseases.
- Huckleberry are high in iron and help to build blood.
Uses of Huckleberry
Huckleberry taste: Ripe huckleberries are fairly sweet with a little tartness. Though they can be eaten fresh, they’re often made into tasty beverages, jams, puddings, candies, syrups, and other foods.
- Huckleberries may be used fresh, yet they have a very short shelf life and thus are most commonly found in frozen form.
- They are very well suited to cooked and baked preparations, including pies, muffins, cookies, breads, pancakes and waffles.
- Huckleberries make great compotes and syrups alone or in combination with other berries such as strawberries and raspberries. Complimentary pairings include citrus, fresh figs, dried strawberries, raisins, cranberries, citrus such as oranges, lemon and grapefruit, orange blossoms, cream, cardamon, vanilla, and baking spices such as cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg.
- Huckleberries give out very unique taste when added with honey
- It can be added to fruit salads
- Leaves of huckleberry can be used for preparing tea.
- It is also used in preparing jams, pies and preserves.
Nutritional value of Huckleberry
- It has high iron content and hence helps in better blood circulation
- Since it is the good source of vitamin C it helps develop resistance to fight against immune deficiencies.
- Its potassium content regulates water balance.
- Helps to speed up the metabolism rate and promotes healthier muscle tone.