What Are Currants and Why We Love To Bake Cookies With Currants!
You can find currants in jams and jellies, scones and puddings, or garnishes and granola — but today, let’s talk about currants in cookies.
Of course, a bowl of ice cream topped with hot fudge, whipped cream, and sprinkles is nothing short of delish. And the yumminess that comes from a warm brownie straight out of the oven is pretty good, too — but when it comes to all the desserts that make up the sweet treat kingdom, cookies simply can’t be beat.
We’re just speaking facts. And according to a recent survey, America agrees — cookies are the best, so we set out to make our own. As a result, the world now has BOOP cookies (you’re welcome, world).
So, what makes our cookies better than the rest? Well, for starters, we rely on Mother Nature’s candy to sweeten our cookies — you won’t find refined sugar in a BOOP, but you will find currants.
What are currants, you ask? Read on to get the scoop on all things currants and why we love them so much here at BOOP Bakery.
Currants 101: Everything You Need To Know
If you’ve ever stumbled across a recipe that called for currants and found yourself dazed and confused, you probably hopped on the “all-knowing” Google to get to the bottom of this mystery fruit. After all, currants aren’t nearly as popular as dried fruits like raisins or sultanas (aka golden raisins), so there’s a pretty good chance that they might be completely new to you.
The word “currant” simply refers to a small, seedless raisin used in cooking and baking.
Got it — so currants are just raisins, right? Kind of… but not exactly. Although the technical definition does point to a currant being a raisin, there’s more that you should know about them.
What Exactly Are Currants?
When most people refer to currants in the United States, they’re typically talking about Zante currants (aka Corinth raisins from black Corinth grapes), which — believe it or not — are not actually currants.
That said, Red Corinth and White Corinth grapes are also sometimes dried. These, however, are often marketed under the name “Champagne grapes,” but don’t get it twisted — they are very different from the grapes used to make your favorite sparkling wines.
So Are Currants Grapes?
Nope, but we’ll explain where all the confusion comes from.
In the United States, commercial cultivation of tasty currants was banned back in 1911. But why? Because the shrubs they grow on — which are all members of the Ribes genus — were blamed for hosting a disease called “white pine blister rust” that threatened our crops.
Of course, we couldn’t let that happen — so farmers were forbidden to grow any Ribes species, and all existing plantings were systematically destroyed. For this reason, many Americans confuse Zante raisins with currants.
Are Currants Still Banned?
After over half a century, the ban on currants was officially lifted in 2003, and all was right in the world. Right?
Not quite — don’t go running to plant currants in your garden just yet, as restrictions on whether it’s illegal to grow the shrub vary between states.
Massachusetts, for example, still maintains its regulations which prohibit black currants statewide — but they do allow white or red currants, as well as gooseberries, in certain towns.
Are Currants and Gooseberries the Same?
Close, but no cigar! True currants are closely related to gooseberries, as they both belong to the Ribes family. But unlike the latter, they don’t have thorns.
So, what do they taste like?
Like gooseberries, the taste of currants is a combo of sweet, tart, and pure joy. Tannins are present in various quantities, causing your mouth to pucker. Their sweetness is balanced by bright acidity, which can be similar to raisins with a little more intensity. Gooseberries, on the other hand, can be sour and slightly sweet — almost like an unripe grape.
Why Do We Love Them at BOOP Bakery?
Now that we’ve cleared that up and you understand real, fresh currants are not actually grapes, you might be wondering why we love them so much. Well, there are actually quite a few reasons — let’s go over them:
Currants Are Rich in Antioxidants
The subtly sweet berry contains a variety of polyphenol antioxidants, which have been linked with heart health, blood sugar support, and more.
Not convinced yet? Recent research also suggests that currants may have anti-inflammatory properties — which means they just might support a range of health benefits. Pretty impressive, we know.
Currants Are a Great Source of Vitamins
In addition to antioxidants, currants are rich in certain nutrients, such as:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin C
- B vitamins (B5, B6, and B1)
- Vitamin E
The most significant in this bunch, however, is vitamin C. In fact, currants carry a whopping four times the amount of vitamin C as oranges, and double the amount found in blueberries. In other words, it might be time to switch up your go-to serving of fruit!
Vitamin C is used by the body in a number of ways, such as metabolizing protein and forming collagen — not to mention vitamin C’s famous role in supporting the immune system, too!
Currants Pack a Punch of Dietary Fiber
Currants pack a nourishing punch of minerals and fiber in every bite, which can give your digestion a hearty boost. And did we mention they’re low in calories, too?
With this in mind, it’s easy to see why we bake currants into our Oatmeal Cranberry cookies. With just one cookie, you’ll fuel your body with 3 grams of fiber to keep you full and happy throughout the day.
Currants Are Naturally Low in Fat, Sodium, and Cholesterol
Many traditional cookies are loaded with trans fat, excess sodium, refined sugar, and cholesterol, all of which can negatively impact your health. So for those of us who are cookie lovers at heart, this is a serious problem. If only there was a way to make cookies both yummy and healthy…
Enter currants. Currants are naturally low in fat, sodium, and cholesterol, and full of body-nourishing nutrients while still bringing a delicious, sweet flavor to the table — which is exactly why we use them to make our BOOP cookies.
In just one bite, you’ll find that the currants add a subtle sweetness to our cookies with just a tinge of tartness. And since we only use wholesome ingredients in our recipe, you can rest easy knowing that you’re giving your body only the best.
Here’s a list of everything that you won’t find in a BOOP:
- High fructose corn syrup
- Refined sugar
- Refined flour
- Trans fats
- Artificial colors
- Artificial flavors
Instead, every batch of our addicting soft-baked cookies is made with nourishing ingredients like sweet currants, date paste, whole grain rolled oats, organic chia seeds, and organic flax seeds.
Currents are packed with nutrients while still bringing a perfectly sweet flavor to the party. Enough said.
At BOOP Bakery, we’re all about snacks that don’t only taste good, but that actually nourish the body, too. That’s why we bake wholesome ingredients like currants into our cookies. Offering a subtle sweetness and the perfect hint of homemade nostalgia, BOOP cookies are like no other.
BOOP Bakery™ believes cookies are better off enjoyed than locked away in a cookie jar. BOOP created a line of craveable, soft-baked cookies that allow health-conscious consumers and cookie connoisseurs alike to indulge without the guilt that comes with most processed sweets and treats. BOOP set out to bake delicious, wholesome, craveable cookies everyone can freely enjoy any time of day, whenever, wherever, whyever, proving no moment is too small for a BOOP!