Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and Native to the Northern Hemisphere, these plants have been cultivated throughout Europe and Asia for centuries. They are used commonly in cakes and desserts. The plants also are used decoratively in some gardens. Here is a summary of findings (alongside the references) for existing randomized controlled trials investigating the potential benefits of black currants in this area: The name comes from the Anglo-French phrase "raisins de Corinthe" (grapes of Corinth) and the Ionian island of Zakynthos (Zante), which was once the major producer and exporter. You will find them in many guises but they are the main players in both a Christmas cake or Christmas pudding, and mince pies would be nothing without them. These berries also lend themselves well to savory dishes, because the tart flavor makes a strong contrast. Some recipes suggest plumping the dried currants before use. Currants (the raisin kind) traditionally came from Corinth, Greece which shipped small raisins (dried grapes) throughout Europe. Although the bushes are winter hardy, frosts during the flowering period may adversely affect the yield and cold winds may restrict the number of flying insects visiting and pollinating the flowers. Primm Springs, Tennessee. To be classified as a currant, the bush must be in the genus Ribes . Currants are high in vitamin C, phosphorus, calcium and iron. just purchased a jar of currant jam. Elaine Lemm is a renowned British food writer, classically trained chef, teacher, and author with over 25 years of experience writing about British food and cooking. The leaves look right, the fruit grows the same, same color, same little bit of ex flower on the bottom of the berry as a currant has, except they're large and very sweet. Are they simply the same thing but with just a different colored skin? In some places, the dried fruits sold at grocery stores as “currants” are actually dried Zante raisins from Greece. Currants contains lot of Ostrich - Currents are similar to raisins but hey are sweeter and don't have as strong a taste as raisins. The grapes were originally cultivated in the south of Greece and more specifically, the island of Zante, hence the name Zante currant, used in the United States. Saxifragaceae Common Names: Currant (English), Johannisbeere (German), Ribes (Danish, Swedish, Italian), Groseille (French), Bes (Flemish). They are dried, dark red, seedless grapes often called the Black Corinth grape. The ribes currants should not be confused with the dried currant used in cakes and puddings, which is a small-fruited cultivar of grape, called Zante currant. The ban in the US mentioned was news to me! They are green on the inside. Other names for currants are Zante currants, Corinth raisins, or Corinthian raisins. It is also known as Corinthian raisins.In United States, currents are known as Zante currants.Sometimes, the word currant is also used to indicate any type of red, white, or blackberry from the gooseberry species of fruits. Yum! So, currants were the only food source of this essential nutrient. The red currant bush has lobed leaves and a rapid growth habit, maturing very quickly into a small shrub. The grapes are small and seedless. The U.S. ban on currants was put in place in 1911 out of concerns about a plant disease called white pine blister rust, which uses currants as an alternate host. Currants are made by drying black or dark red seedless grapes. The best time for currants is late spring through late summer. Zante currants are the dried form of an ancient Greek grape variety properly called the Black Corinth, Vitis vinifera, the smallest of the seedless grapes. Raisins (Image credit: Kelli Foster) The raisins can hold the flavor making the finished dish even tastier. I didn't read the jar and thought I was getting blackberry jam. Dried currants make good decoration for gingerbread cookies, and are delicious stirred into scone dough. Currants are often used in freshly-baked scones, sprinkled over salads or stirred into a traditional hot cross bun recipe. Currants are glossy red or black berries that grow on thornless upright shrubs. Raisins vs Currants • Currants have tart flavor, whereas raisins are sweet in flavor. Moreover, they are essential ingredients in Christmas cakes and Christmas puddings. Get daily tips and expert advice to help you take your cooking skills to the next level. When you’re picking out currants, look for ones that are bright in color, translucent, and firm. The name currant comes from the ancient city of Corinth. In the UK and Ireland, they are simply called currants. Currants are dried Black Corinth or Carina grapes. Currants are dark red and have a slightly chewy texture. Raisins have some phytonutrients, most notably boron but raisins contain fewer phenols than grapes since many of grape’s phenols are largely lost in the conversion of grapes to raisins through the grape drying process. Most climates are friendly to currants, which thrive under lower light conditions. They are dried, dark red, seedless grapes often called the Black Corinth grape. Currants are naturally dried like raisins, which gives them their dark color. These three are used extensively in traditional British and Irish cakes and puddings. The word “currant” is a corruption of “Corinth”. Quinn believed that currants could revitalize family farms in New York state by providing a source of income through a somewhat unusual berry. You will even find them in chutneys and curries making them, without a doubt, one of the most versatile ingredients in the kitchen. Currants are the freshest in June and July. It tastes very good. You will find them in classic dishes like Spotted Dick or an Eccles cake. • Small golden color raisins are called sultanas. If you're talking about Zante Currants (often shortened to currants), they are in fact dried grapes (just a smaller grape). Currants are the rarest variety of the three. I have what I think are black currants growing wild on my property. Currants, sultanas and raisins are small, sweet, dried fruits that come from different varieties of vine-grown grapes. At that time, transporting fruits to the island was impossible. So are they interchangeable? A true currant grows in a shrub form and is extremely hardy. Native to the Northern Hemisphere, these plants have been cultivated throughout Europe and Asia for centuries. They are, in fact, very different and each brings their qualities to the baking party. When they are dried the result is a dark, dried fruit much like a currant, making it dense in texture and bursting with a sweet flavor. The currants mentioned here are the dark, black currants popular in cakes. The berries should be plump, glossy and a little bit firm when they are purchased, and they can be stored for as long as three days under refrigeration. You will find them in classic dishes like Spotted Dick or an Eccles cake. Black currants are a bit smaller, sour, and are exceptionally high in antioxidants such as anthocyanins and phenolic acids, according to studies. To the best of my knowledge the bushes still exist on the farm which was purchased and kept mostly the same since I was a child. I've always been told that currants were small raisins, and I can't stand raisins so I never tried currants. Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the They are also not as juicy. That means they store well and break down slower. A sultana is a dried white grape, but of the seedless variety. CURRANTS Ribes spp. Currants, also known as “Zante currants,” are tiny, dried grapes. To be classified as a currant, the bush must be in the genus Ribes. Blackcurrants can grow well on sandy or heavy loams, or forest soils, as long as their nutrient requirements are met. The currants mentioned here are the dark, black currants popular in cakes. What is Currants? True currants are small berries that grow on shrubs and are more like gooseberries. I also want to know what they are. Anon41597 - Blackcurrants are not sweet until cooked. Zante currants, Corinth raisins, or simply currants outside of the US, are raisins of the small, sweet, seedless grape cultivar Black Corinth (Vitis vinifera). Raisins are dried white Moscatel grapes. There are two distinct fruits which are called currants: (1) the dried zante grape; like a raisin, it is used in baked goods and (2) a fresh tiny berry related to the gooseberry. Plus, if you add to the issue that different countries use different names, it can become even more confusing. 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