Adding ethanol - the type of alcohol found in rum, vodka, tequila and other spirits - boosted the antioxidant nutrients in strawberries and blackberries, the researchers found.
Any coloured fruit might be made even more healthful with the addition of a splash of alcohol, researchers report in the Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture.
Dr. Korakot Chanjirakul and colleagues at Kasetsart University in Thailand and scientists at the U.S. Department of Agriculture stumbled upon their finding unexpectedly. They were exploring ways to help keep strawberries fresh during storage. Treating the berries with alcohol increased in antioxidant capacity and free radical scavenging activity, they found.
Source: Chanjirakul, K., Wang, S.Y., Wang, C.Y., Siriphanich, J. (2007) Natural volatile treatments increase free-radical scavenging capacity of strawberries and blackberries. Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture, Published Online: April 19, 2007.