What are Goji Berries
Goji berries, also known as wolfberries, are a reddish-orange berry with a slightly sweet and usually sour flavor. One variety tastes almost like a tomato while another leans more toward the berry family. The goji berries found frequently in health food stores are generally the more berry-flavored variety although you wouldn't really call them sweet. Frequently marketed as a superfood, they can usually be found in the supplement section. Raw varieties are carefully collected and dried at low temperatures for those on a raw food diet. Since they must be dried in order to preserve them for shipping and improve their shelf-life, the texture and consistency leave a bit to be desired from a chef's perspective.
How to Enjoy Goji Berries
Goji berries are easy to enjoy in smoothies and raw elixirs. If you don't have a powerful blender you may want to keep them soaked in a little water or apple juice to soften them before blending. Goji berry powder is also available and can be stirred directly into juices, herbal teas, or even just water. They make a great topping for desserts, could easily be added to raw cupcakes or granola, and blend up well in raw puddings and ice cremes when well soaked. The dried berries make a great addition to trail mixes, add wonderful zest to a salad, and can often be used in place of raisins in recipes of all kinds.
Nutritional and Medicinal Value of Goji Berries
The nutritive and possibly medicinal benefits of goji berries are many and legendary. Goji berries are very high in antioxidants and so they are a great anti-inflammatory amongst other wonderful qualitites. Research on their medicinal properties is being carried out around the globe. In Traditional Chinese Medicine goji is used as an immune tonic and blood tonic. Children of all ages will be happy to hear that goji berries are reknowned for their anti-aging properites as well.