Cherries are one of my favorite fruits! Growing up in Davis, California, we had a tree in our backyard. I used to sit in that tree each summer and devour homegrown ripe cherries by the handful. Now I live in Colorado and cherries are only in season for a few weeks a year –usually from late June to early August. That's when the farmer's market and grocery stores here are overflowing with this luscious fruit, and I make sure to get my hands on them just like I did when I was a girl!
The cherries pictured above are Raniers, they're fully ripe even with the yellow coloring you see. Bing cherries are more common than Raniers and are a deep red color that is almost purple. The flesh of both Ranier and Bing cherries is semi-firm, and they have a rich, sweet flavor with just a hint of tartness. Like apricots, plumbs, and peaches, cherries are called stone fruit, because the seed is large and stone-like.
Cherries are a phenomenal tasting real food –they're high in Vitamin A and Vitamin C, and full of anti-inflammatory compounds such as anthocyanin, the pigment in cherries that has numerous health benefits including helping to regulate blood sugar and reduce inflammation.
We all know that cherries can be eaten raw or made into jam; they can also be frozen and used in smoothies. Better yet, they can be baked into a pie or fruit crumble type of dessert. I'm especially fond of using cherries in unexpected ways such as a savory salad or a chicken dish. Here's a few of my recipes that use cherries, some use fresh, others use frozen.
What's your favorite way to eat this luscious incredible fruit? Do you grow your own? Do you have a favorite cherry recipe? Leave a comment and let us know!