Tradition & Diet

When the rose spoon sweet met bergamot

Traditional fruits-in-syrup are never out of fashion; they offer a sense of homemade and traditional. You can find them at every corner of Greece, although the traditional sweets of Chios are the most famous ones. Fruits-in-syrup were what the housewives of Chios would treat guests/visitors to welcome them, along with a cup of Greek coffee and a glass of cold water. Fruits-in-syrup are usually the first desserts we ever taste, and usually from the hands of our grandmothers.

Sweets-in-syrup were the result of the need to preserve seasonal fruit throughout the year. Almost every fruit, as well as some nuts and flowers, can be preserved in syrup. They traditionally follow the seasonal fruit patterns: citrus fruit in the winter, bitter orange and unripe fig in spring, pistachio, walnut, cherry, and sour cherry in early summer, watermelon and grape in late summer, and quince in autumn.

Fruits-in-syrup and ypovrychio are prominent among traditional Greek desserts. According to oral tradition, the ypovrychio was first created in Galatas, Constantinople (Istanbul) by confectioners from Chios, while it has also been the official welcome treat of the Patriarchate, also known as “the white sweet”.

Nutritional value and ways to enjoy them

Besides the traditional way of enjoying them, you can also use fruits-in-syrup as ice cream or yogurt garnish, or to prepare other desserts such as cheesecakes of fruit cakes. Many chefs also use them to make sauces.

Fruits-in-syrup can be eaten during lent as well as when on a diet, as they have multiple nutritional benefits.

If you follow a healthy diet but do not want to be deprived of sweets, fruits-in-syrup are one of the healthiest options you have for satisfying your sweet tooth, and they lack for nothing compared to cakes, ice creams, or chocolate bars. They have zero fat and cholesterol content, as only sugar is used to make them and no butter, cream, eggs, or oil. This also explains their low calorific value compared to other desserts – one portion of fruit-in-syrup has 100-120 calories compared to the 600 calories in syrupy pastries, cakes, etc.

Three more reasons why fruits-in-syrup are the best option:

Γλυκά Κουταλιού
  1. They are high in fiber and help the bowels function properly.
  2. Although processed, they preserve the antioxidants and vitamins of the fruit, such as vitamin C and b-carotene, which protect the body and enhance its immune system.
  3. They have a delicious fruity taste.

Are fruits-in-syrup allowed when on a diet?

Their strong sweetness that comes from the natural fruit sugars and the added sugar prevents you from consuming large quantities. One tablespoon is usually enough to satisfy your craving for something sweet and you will only gain about 100-120 calories. Therefore nutritionists recommend fruits-in-syrup as a dessert option instead of off-the-shelf/packaged desserts.

Indicative calorie content of fruits in syrup:

Mastic ypovrychio 1 tea spoon 80 calories
Cherry in syrup 1 tea spoon 100 calories
Sour cherry in syrup 1 tea spoon 100 calories
Δίαιτα Γλυκά Κουταλιού
Mastic ypovrychio 1 tea spoon 80 calories
Κερασάκι γλυκό του κουταλιού 1 tea spoon 100 calories
Sour cherry in syrup 1 tea spoon 100 calories

Disclaimer: The purpose of this website is to provide information. Before you decide to change your nutritional habits, please consult with a competent health professional or nutritionist.