Swedish forests are abundant in berries at this time of the year, which is actually one of my favorite things about the Swedish summer. I love the variety and the versatility that berries offer. One can make jams, drinks, pies, crumbles, cakes, sorbets or eat them fresh. However, not all types of berries fit all types of cooking/eating. Plus, there are so many different kinds that it might be difficult to recognize them, both in the bush or in the supermarket. Don’t worry though… here is a crash course in Swedish berries.
Svarta vinbär (blackcurrant)
Dark berries, black on the outside and dark red on the inside, with quite an intense tart flavour. They might not be the best to eat fresh but they make great jams, sorbets and juices.
Röda vinbär (redcurrant)
They are like blackcurrants but in vibrant red and with a slightly more intense flavour. Their looks are quite attractive and therefore, are often used to decorate cakes and tarts. Redcurrant juice is also delicious. Do not mix these with lingonberries, both are red and about the same size but the taste is different.
Gooseberries exist in several varieties, cultivated or wild, they can be green, yellow or red. They are sour if picked too early and have a somewhat special taste when mature. If the taste is too strong when fresh, try to use them in desserts. They are delicious in cakes, crumbles and other desserts.