Juniper berry

Juniper berry

Juniper berries are the fruit of a shrub native to the northern hemisphere, the common juniper. These fleshy berries are initially green, before turning a color ranging between blue, black, and purple. They have long been used for medicinal purposes due to their diuretic, antiseptic, invigorating, and digestive properties. In addition to flavoring game and sauerkraut, juniper berries are one of the ingredients of gin.

Juniper berries can be found throughout the year. They take up to two years to ripen and are picked in fall. Freshly dried berries have the most flavor. Whole berries are the best. It makes no difference if they are shriveled, just be sure to check that there is no mold on them. However, it is better to choose the darkest berries with a resiny scent.

Juniper berries can be used whole or crushed in a large number of dishes. They are used to flavor game and other meats, sauerkraut, pot-au-feu, quiches, patés, forcemeats, and broths.

Juniper berries should be stored in an airtight container protected from light and heat.

Juniper berries should not be eaten during pregnancy.

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