29 Mar Food by Letter – G is for Grape
People have been cultivating grapes for 8,000 years, and the oldest known cultivation was started in the nation of Georgia. From there, grape cultivation spread throughout Europe.
These days, the average American eats about eight pounds of fresh grapes each year. Fresh (table) grapes, although tasty, account for less than 12% of the world’s total grape production. We globally produce about 7.2 trillion gallons of wine each year, making it, by far, the most prevalent use of grapes. Since fresh grapes are so perishable and transportation costs high, fresh grapes are typically consumed in the country of their production. Europe and North America lead the world in fresh grape consumption.
Don’t forget about raisins! Since it takes about four pounds of grapes to produce one pound of raisins, the raisin industry uses about 3.2 million tons of grapes each year.
Not only do they taste great, but grapes offer a host of health benefits due to their high nutrient and antioxidant contents. Just one cup of grapes provides more than a quarter of your recommended dietary intake for vitamin K, a vitamin needed for blood clotting and healthy bones. They’re also a good source of vitamin C, are high in antioxidants, and contain beneficial plant compounds that may protect against chronic health conditions such as diabetes, cancer and heart disease.
Looking for a nutritious and delicious springtime treat? This decadent 5 Minute Grape Sorbet can be made in minutes. The best part…you only need three ingredients!
- Green Grapes: The grapes are the base of this recipe, you’ll need about 3 cups.
- Sugar or Honey: To add a dash of sweetness, you can use either sugar or honey.
- Lemon Zest: 1 teaspoon of finely grated lemon zest adds a bit of refreshing lemon flavor to the sorbet.
- Lemon Juice: Save that lemon! You’ll need 1 teaspoon of the juice.
You’ll want to have your food processor (or immersion blender) on hand as well!
Step 1: Freeze the grapes.
Wash the grapes, then remove the stems and arrange them on a plate or baking sheet in a single layer. Freeze until they’re solid, which should take around 4 hours.
Step 2: Blend the ingredients.
In a food processor, puree the frozen grapes, scraping down the sides of the processor as needed. Add the remaining ingredients, and continue to puree until everything is smooth. Once everything is smooth, it’s ready to enjoy!