Huelva strawberries: all you need to know about the ‘queen of fruits’
If Huelva is known for something, in addition to its extraordinary, beautiful panoramic views, it is for its exquisite gastronomic offering. In the magic triangle of the Huelva table, strawberries are the third vertex along with prawns and ham. Huelva is the best and largest European strawberry producer. This is thanks to the fact that it has 248 hours of sun a month in spring and a very small atmospheric temperature range between day and night, and very importantly, fertile lands that mean that 95% of this fruit in Spain is grown in this province. For these and many more reasons, we want to bring you closer and show you everything you need to know about this tasty fruit.
How Huelva Strawberries are cultivated
Before planting strawberries, it is very important to take some things into account. Firstly, the land has to be prepared properly. The main thing is that the soil is weed-free and well fertilised. It should be borne in mind that strawberries are perennial plants and, therefore, produce fruit throughout their life. However, to get quality fruit the crop must be changed every three years.
Where to plant large and small strawberries
Strawberries need certain basic care and there are two aspects that are very important: temperature, which must be warm, and sun exposure. However, if you are going to plant wild varieties, these must be planted in the shade
What temperature do strawberries need?
Provided that the plant has no fruit, it is beneficial for it for the temperature to be lower than 10 degrees so that it can develop well and produce fruit. Nonetheless, when it starts to fruit, it is important for the temperature to be between 14 and 21ºC, and to never falls below 12ºC when the fruit is maturing.
Strawberry varieties and types
For those who do not know, there are over 600 different varieties of this fruit. They are differentiated by size, colour, texture and flavour. Here, however, we are only going to talk about four, since these are the ones we can find in the Huelva region.
- Queen of the valleys. This is the most common variety. They are very small, sweet and have a colour that fluctuates between whiteish red and bright red.
- This strawberry is of Californian origin and is the first variety to be collected. It is very brightly coloured, has very good flavour and is a fruit with a very firm texture.
- Pájaro. These strawberries are a uniform bright red. It may be the strawberry type with the best flavour.
- This strawberry variety is the one you find in summer, since it is picked in mid-July until September.
Benefits of eating strawberries
In addition to being delicious, strawberries are very healthy. If you don’t believe us, to follow are six benefits of eating strawberries that we are sure will convince you.
- Strawberries are low in calories. One hundred grams of strawberry has 33 calories. They are also very rich in fibre, which helps regulate intestinal flora.
- They are loaded with antioxidants. Strawberries are known for their powerful qualities for maintaining cellular health.
- They are a natural anti-inflammatory. The phenols they contain help (like aspirin or ibuprofen) to fight against inflammatory processes of the organism by inhibiting the production of the enzyme cyclooxygenase.
- They are a rich source of vitamins. Strawberries are a source of B vitamins, such as niacin, vitamin B6, pantothenic acid, riboflavin and folic acid. They also contain vitamin C.
- They contribute to bone health. Strawberries have a large concentration of potassium, magnesium and vitamin K.
- They have an anti-ageing effect. The ellegic acid in strawberries is beneficial for skin elasticity. It also slows down the appearance of wrinkles and flaccidity.
Four delicious strawberry recipes
Huelva strawberries are of an exceptional quality and are, therefore, in high demand all over Europe. Their flavour, characteristics and properties make the perfect tandem. For this reason and so you can try them at any time, we are giving you four recipes with the flavour of strawberry.
To make this delicious recipe, where you will make the most of this fruit’s spectacular flavour, all you will need are 500 g of strawberries, 5 mature tomatoes, extra virgin olive oil, 1 clove of garlic, 8 slices of day-old bread, vinegar and a little salt and pepper.
Spinach and strawberry salad
Even though salads are not the most obvious thing to eat at this time of year, you will definitely want to eat this one again and again, since it is the freshest and most delicious one there is. To make it, prepare a bowl with spinach, then cut some cherry tomatoes in half and add some toasted bread cut into cubes and finish off with some finely sliced apples and some strawberries. To complete this dish, just season it to your taste.
Strawberry cup with cream and sponge cake
This strawberry recipe is a dessert for those with a very sweet tooth. It is very special. To make it, all you will need are 500 g of strawberries, 1/2 litre of light cream, 200 g of sugar, since it is made the same way as the traditional lemon sponge cake.
This is a delicious dessert and we are sure you’ll love it. All you will need are puff pastry dough, 250 ml of whipping cream, 100 g of cream cheese, strawberries and icing sugar.
Four things about strawberries you definitely did not know
The true fruit are the seeds.
The fruit of the strawberry are the small seeds dotted over its surface, usually numbering 150 to 200. It is the only fruit that has its seeds on the outside.
Strawberries are a member of the rose family.
The crimson fruit belongs to the same branch as peaches, apples and pears, which, in botanical terms, belong to the rose bush order.
How do you get rid of strawberry stains?
This fruit leaves stains that are not easy to get out. To do so, mix a quarter litre of cold water, a quarter tablespoon of liquid detergent and a tablespoon of vinegar. Then immerse the garment for a few minutes and rub until the stain disappears.
Teresa Cabarrús, a Spanish lady from French high society, used to bathe in 10 litres of strawberry juice to keep her skin tight and soft.
Where to stay
The best accommodation option if you are visiting southern Spain is Fuerte Hoteles. The Hotel Fuerte El Rompido is one of the most beautiful hotels in the area due to its spectacular location on a hill dominating the entire natural landscape of the river Piedras. Added to that is an Andalusian aesthetic architecture that blends in with its environment. An ideal place for resting and practicing sports surrounded by nature.