Native to the rainforests in the Patagonia area of Chile and southern Argentina, Maqui or Chilean Wineberry, Maqui is considered a superfruit for its many amazing health properties. It has anti-inflammatory properties which can help people who suffer from bone and joint pains. Maqui berries have anthocyanins and polyphenols which help protect against free radicals and delay aging.
Maqui is a small evergreen tree and with branches that are abundant, thin and flexible. Its flower is small and white, yielding a small edible fruit (maqui berry) that is a favored food for birds. The small, purple-black berries are about the same size as blueberries. The maqui berry is also known locally as maqui or maquei, queldrón, ach, koelon, and clon.
According to myths, the edible fruit was eaten by the Mapuche Indians. Claude Gay documented in 1844 that natives used maqui to prepare chicha, a fermented beverage. Today, maqui may be used to make jam, juice, an astringent or as an ingredient in processed foods or beverages.
Fresh maqui berries are not readily available in the US. You can usually purchase maqui berry in a form of juice drink, supplement, or powder.
Image by rsaezn available under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.
Maqui Berry Smoothie
1 cup frozen strawberries
½ cup blackberries, blueberries, or raspberries
1 cup orange juice
1 tsp lemon juice
1 oz. Maqui Berry Juice
Crushed Ice (if desired)
1. Put all of the ingredients in a blender with crushed ice if desired.
2. Blend until smooth.
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