By Terry Orr
April 30, 2013 is National Raisin Day!!
At a very early age, raisin were part of my diet and enjoy many ways – at breakfast in my cereal, oatmeal, cream of wheat – snacks – raisin bread, chocolate covered raisins – raisins in pastries – and raisins in ice cream. Yep, I still enjoy raisins after all these years and they are good for me.
Raisin varieties depend on the type of grape used, and are made in a variety of sizes and colors including green, black, blue, purple and yellow. Seedless varieties include the sultana (also known as Thompson Seedless in the USA) and Flame grapes. Raisins are traditionally sun-dried, but may also be water-dipped and artificially dehydrated.
"Golden raisins" (called "sultanas" outside the USA) are made from the sultana grape, treated with sulfur dioxide to maintain their golden colour, and dried either on the vine or on special drying racks.
Black Corinth or Zante currant are miniature raisins that are much darker in colour and have a tart, tangy flavour. They are called currants outside the USA. (Source: Wikipedia)
Interesting and fun facts about raisins:
- From the time a vine is planted to its initial yield, the first crop, takes at least three years.
- Seventy-five percent of grapes are eaten at breakfast.
- California produces 95 percent of all the raisins in the United States and about 50 percent of the raisins in the world!
- The word "raisin" comes from the Latin word racemus which means a cluster of grapes or berries.
How do you like your raisins?
(All images from Google)