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How to Cook with Grapes

Grapes have always been one of my very favorite fruits. With each bite their crisp skin gives way to a sweet, soft center that I simply can’t resist. Once I start eating a bowl, I’m hard pressed not to finish. Though I enjoy grapes very much as is, I’ve also loved plucking them from the vine and freezing them for a light and delicious after-dinner snack.

Health benefits: Grapes are considered a low glycemic index food, meaning they won’t spike your blood sugar upon consumption. They’re also a great source of manganese, vitamin C, and potassium. Grapes also contain resveratrol, which is a polyphenol that helps improve brain health, and are also widely known for their ability to aid in digestion. In fact, they are considered a laxative food as they help relieve cramping and constipation.

In addition, purple grapes have even been found to help prevent breast cancer and even macular degeneration according to recent research studies. And among many other health benefits, grapes contain powerful antioxidant-containing flavonoids that fight free radicals in the body and even prevent cardiovascular diseases and some types of cancer.

Nutritional statistics: One cup of red or green grapes contains approximately 104 calories, 0 grams fat, 3 mg sodium, 27 grams carbohydrates, 1 gram fiber, 23 grams sugar, and 1 gram protein.

Cooking methods: Besides eating grapes fresh, they’re also delicious when rinsed and frozen. The result is an icy treat that’s almost like a popsicle, and also doubles a fantastic “ice cube” for cocktails or other fruity beverages.

Grapes also lend themselves well to fruit salads, and add a sweet flavor to savory dishes such as quinoa and pasta. One of the most popular ways to consume grapes is in wine, which has been touted as having such benefits as improved heart health and even acting as an aphrodisiac. Last but not least, grapes are a great addition to baked goods, especially focaccia, which is a light fluffy bread that’s made even more delicious with the addition of this delicious, heart-healthy fruit.

Recipes:

Grape Kombucha from Hella Delicious

White Grape Gazpacho

Grape and Sausage Pasta Skillet from Iowa Girl Eats

Dijon Pork with Grapes

Grape Focaccia with Rosemary from Smitten Kitchen

10 Tasty Super Food Recipes – Care2

September 23rd, 2012

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