What are capers and what are they eaten with?
Capers go well with seafood and vegetables. This delicious seasoning has been known for a very long time, but sometimes it still raises questions in our latitudes. What are these strange little fruits preserved in jars? How, with what they are eaten and in general, is it tasty?
What are capers
Capers are not fruits at all, but flower buds of a plant called the caper. Scientists have about 300 names of the caper, and its homeland is Asia and Africa. Among all the many species, spiny capers are used for food. It is specially grown in Greece, Spain, Italy, France, Algeria. In the cuisine of these countries, the use of this piquant spice is widely cultivated, and the best varieties of capers are also exported.
To make capers tasty, they are first picked by hand to find the smallest buds – they are considered elite. The collected buds are dried in the shade so that they do not dry out too much, and are covered with salt and vegetable oil. After 3 months of aging, the capers are ready. There are also pickled capers in production, but if you want to learn the real Mediterranean taste and preserve all the beneficial substances, choose salted ones. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to find them here, because pickled ones are stored longer and are easier to sell. If you want to improve the taste of capers, you can rinse them, put them in a clean container and pour over heated olive oil with herbs – rosemary, basil, thyme. After the oil with capers has cooled, put them in the refrigerator – and in a couple of days they will taste “right”.
Capers are not only tasty, but also really healthy. They contain a lot of minerals and salts, but they are famous for vitamin C and rare vitamin P – routine, which is called the “magician for blood vessels”: it prevents hemorrhages, strengthens the walls of blood vessels, and sclerosis is not terrible with it. The substance capparidin has antiallergic effect, and various essential oils have a good effect on the skin and hair. It is believed that the use of capers is good for women’s health and can even prevent cancer.
Ancient physicians and traditional healers of our time used the buds and flowers of capers to heal wounds, burns and internal bleeding, and the kidneys – to treat thyroid diseases.
Capers are eaten whole, chopped are added to sauces, put in mayonnaise and various salads. Culinary experts continue to experiment with combinations, but if you are still new to capers, then it is better to use them in proven classic combinations – with meat, salted and smoked fish, seafood, bell peppers, cheese, fresh herbs, olive oil.
A small bunch of arugula, a can of tuna, 1 onion, capers, 100 g of parmesan, salt, pepper, olive oil, balsamic vinegar
Finely chop the onion, grate the Parmesan on a coarse grater. Mix all the ingredients, drizzle a little with balsamic vinegar and add 1-2 tbsp. l. oils.
250 g of cheese, 500 g of tomatoes, half a pod of hot pepper, 2 tbsp. l. parsley, 2 tbsp. l. rosemary, 1 tsp. mint, 1 tbsp. l. capers, juice of one lemon, 2 cloves of garlic, salt, pepper, balsamic vinegar
Chop the tomatoes, peppers and herbs, pour in the dressing of oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper and garlic and let it brew a little. Add chopped cheese, capers and pour over lemon juice.
Spaghetti caper sauce
1 bell pepper, 1 tbsp. l. olive oil, 2 cloves of garlic, 1 tbsp. l. capers, 1 tbsp. l. basilica
Cut the pepper into strips and fry in olive oil with garlic. Put in a separate container and toss with capers and basil.
Any broth, 3 small onions, 100 g canned tomatoes in their own juice, half a lemon, 300 g capers, green onions, salt
Add sautéed onions, chopped tomatoes to the boiling broth and simmer a little over low heat. Add capers five minutes before switching off. Serve with sour cream, lemon and green onions.
Shrimp with capers
Finely chop the onion and garlic and simmer in 2 tbsp. l. olive oil. Chop tomatoes finely and add them and tomato paste to the pan. Stew for 10 minutes. Dip the shrimps in flour, season and fry for 4 minutes. Pour the finished shrimp with tomato sauce, sprinkle with parsley and capers, sprinkle with lemon juice.