WHAT IS A CAPERBERRY?
This pale green fruit of the caper bush is the result of letting a caper bud flower which produces a caperberry. About the size of a table grape, it’s more flavorful then a caper and should be used much like an olive. If the berry is pickled while still unripe, they can have a strong, unpleasant smell. This is due to the high concentration of mustard oil still present. As edible flower buds go, it’s been a popular ingredient for over 9,000 years. References from the religious to the sexual (it’s rumored to be an aphrodisiac) to the alcoholic (great with a martini) abound.
WHY ARE CAPERBERRIES GOOD FOR YOU?
These plants are perennials with a reputation for being “fat busters.” In terms of minerals they’re rich in copper, sodium, iron and potassium. They also are a good source of Vitamin A, B2, and K. And they contain quercetin which is a natural anti-oxidant.
WHEN ARE CAPERBERRIES IN SEASON?
The buds are a Spring and the berries themselves are a Summer and early Fall harvest. They love hot, dry weather and prefer well-drained soil as well. This makes them a hardy plant capable of growing in desert like conditions or even a crack in a wall!
HOW SHOULD CAPERBERRIES BE STORED?
Like a pickle they’re usually sold already in brine (which acts as a natural preservative). If picked fresh store as you would any fruit, refrigerating to slow down the ripening process. But don’t be afraid to use a bag and a slightly moist paper towel to help preserve them.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A CAPER AND A CAPERBERRY?
Both come from the same plant so the confusion is understandable. Capers are the tiny flower buds, preserved in brine, that are a popular addition to many seafood dishes. If allowed to flower, these buds produce the caperberry