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Redcurrants or blackcurrants, the currants are small bush fruits that can be found mostly in Europe and in western Russia. The Ribes Rubrum (red) and the Ribes Nigrum (black) are present in cuisine, nutrition, forests (at the edge, where the sun can reach them) and have a pleasant aromatic smell that might trick you, because its taste is slightly tart. The bush grows up to 1.5 meters height and width, while the fruits are round with about one centimeter diameter.

Chemically speaking, the redcurrant is made of 87.40% water, 6.80% sugar, 2.50% acids, 0.88% nitrates, 0.53% fats and are rich in vitamin C. The blackcurrants are richer in vitamin C (the richest of all fruits actually) and has many mineral elements (phosphorous, chlorine, sodium, magnesium, calcium). Many people claim that the only difference between them is the color. However, besides the chemical composition, anyone can easily observe the dissimilarities in texture and taste (the reds are much more transparent than the blacks).

Concerning the cuisine around the world, both redcurrants and blackcurrants are usually ingredients for desserts, but also as an interesting condiment to a main course (lamb with redcurrants in the United Kingdom). The blackcurrants are more popular, being used from cake filling to seafood condiment in Japan. Both fruits are also noted beverage components as an important part of many combined fruits juices and smoothies and also some alcoholic beverages like liqueurs and the Kir cocktail.

Ever since the 18th century, the currants have been considered a fruit benefic for the human longevity. They have great effects against rheumatism, hepatitis, constipation, gout, and urinary and digestive inflammations. They are also a natural weapon against obesity and the consumption is recommended in 100-300 grams a day, especially in the morning on an empty stomach.


A popular recipe is the blackcurrant liqueur. The ingredients are:


  • 1 kg blackcurrants

  • 2 g cinnamon

  • 12 g clove

The ingredients are left to infuse for a month in three liters of brandy with 750 grams of sugar, the fruits are smashed and the whole composite is filtered through a strainer.

Personally, I remember the redcurrants and blackcurrants from my vacations in the mountains as a child, where I would trek the forests and gather the fruits along my way. Now, I can recall many mornings started with currant juice and also desserts rich in them and I would advise anyone to consume them, mostly in their raw form, as they offer an interesting taste and, more importantly, amazing nutritional benefits.