Juniper Berries are from an evergreen coniferous tree/shrub of the cypress family. This ancient tree has male and female versions that must grow near each other so that berries are produced. These beautiful blue-black berries ripen every two years. Dried berries are more flavorful than fresh ones. Before cooking with them, crush the berries to release their full flavor.
With biblical references about being a tree of protection, Juniper trees are grown primarily in central and southern Europe (especially Italy).
These berries are good for foods like gamy birds and meats: duck, goose, pork, rabbit, squab, venison, wild boar and meat pates. They are used also to flavor salmon, and drinks like gin and beer.
Juniper Berries have an affinity with apples. Blend into apple jellies you serve with lamb and game meats. You can even try adding some of these crushed berries to an apple dessert like a pie or a tart to enhance its flavor.
These berries are one of the ingredients usually found in Pickling Spices blends.
Considered an antiseptic, Juniper Berries have been used for flatulence and rheumatism.
Return to List of Spice - Herbs from Juniper Berries
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