‘Tis the season to… eat cherries! Summer is here and what a perfect time to take advantage of cherry season. This fruit only harvests from the beginning of June to mid-August! Make sure you get ‘em while they’re still around.
As you head out to our stores to pick up fresh cherries, make sure to look out for these qualities to ensure you’re getting the best ones.
- Look for bright color and supple exterior
- Make sure they are smooth, plump and firm
- Good cherries have green stems attached to them
- Avoid those with blemishes, bruises, extremely light or dark color
- Once you get your cherries, make sure to refrigerate them in order to preserve and improve the flavor!
Apart from being a delicious combination of sweet and tart, cherries provide a bounty of health benefits. Sweet cherries are low fat, sodium free, a good source of fiber and vitamin C, an important source of potassium and micronutrients.
Here are some specific health benefits of cherries:
- One serving of cherries (1-cup or 21 cherries) contains about 90 calories. That’s about 4.3 calories per cherry!
- Studies show that flavonoids, antioxidants found in cherries, can help protect against heart disease, strokes and cancer.
- Melatonin, found in cherries, enhances sleep and promotes healthy sleep patterns.
- Currently, studies are being done to prove that certain phytochemicals in cherries may inhibit arthritic inflammation.
So hurry, hurry! This amazing fruit is in season now; pick them up for a snack or sweet and savory recipes like this one for Cherry Quinoa.
- 1/2 cup chopped onion
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 can (14 oz.) chicken broth
- 1 cup quinoa, rinsed and drained
- 2 tablespoons chopped Anaheim pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
- 2 cups pitted fresh sweet cherries
- 8 ounces small cooked peeled shrimp
- 1/4 cup chopped parsley
- Prepared salsa, optional
- Sauté onion and garlic in oil; add broth, quinoa, Anaheim pepper, salt, and ground pepper.
- Bring mixture to boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer 12 to 18 minutes or until all liquid is absorbed.
- Fluff mixture with a fork and gently stir in cherries, shrimp, and parsley. Serve with salsa, if desired.
215 Calories | 13g Protein | 6 g Fat | 30 g Carbohydrate | 74 mg Cholesterol | 3 g Fiber | 596 mg Sodium
Recipe source: NWCherries.com