BEAUTY IN THE FRIDGE

How to Freeze, Dry and Can Sweet Cherries So You Can Enjoy Them Year-Round

0 13
cherries

Northwest Cherry Growers/ Washington State Fruit Commission

Nothing tastes more like summer than sweet cherries (think: Bing and Rainier cherries). They are the perfect hot weather treat, whether you’re snacking on them at the beach or eating them as a side on a picnic. And what makes them even better is that they happen to be as healthy as they are delicious. “The antioxidants that give cherries their color help reduce inflammation,” says Sammi Brondo, RD, a registered dietician nutritionist based in New York. “They also have potassium which can improve blood pressure, fiber to help lower cholesterol, and vitamin C to support the immune system.”

And it doesn’t stop there: Research keeps showing more and more benefits to eating sweet cherries. Studies suggest that sweet cherry extract may help protect against breast cancer (research suggests it may inhibit the growth of the cancer cells), help aid more restful sleep (sweet cherries contain melatonin, which helps regulate your sleep cycles), and ward off something known as oxidative stress, which has been linked to cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer’s disease, certain cancers, and more.

It’s enough to make you wish you could enjoy the flavor—and health benefits—of sweet cherries all year long. And guess what: You can. Before summer nears its end, grab as many sweet cherries as you can from your farmers’ market or grocery store and try Brondo’s go-to ways to preserve and enjoy them year-round.

Freeze Them

cherries
After freezing, pop cherries in your blender to make delicious smoothies year-round.

Northwest Cherry Growers/ Washington State Fruit Commission

How to do it

Wash, dry, and remove the stems and pits from cherries. (Pro tip: Place each cherry on the top of a bottle and plunge the pit out using a chopstick or a reusable straw. The pit will drop right into the bottle—no mess!) Then arrange the cherries in a single layer on a baking sheet (this ensures they won’t stick together as they freeze) and freeze. The next day, place the cherries in a freezer bag and pop them back into the icy tundra for up to a year.

Ways to enjoy

Brondo says you can use them straight from the freezer by tossing them into your smoothies, baking them into pies, or adding them to savory dishes like chili (no need to thaw first!).

Make Them Into Jam

There’s nothing like fresh cherry jam to liven up Greek yogurt or a slice of toast

Northwest Cherry Growers/ Washington State Fruit Commission

How to do it

Wash and pit two pounds of sweet cherries, then pulse them in a food processor a few times to partially chop them up. Put the cherries in a saucepan with ¾ cup sugar, ½ teaspoon lemon zest, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, and a pinch of salt. Boil over high heat while stirring until the sugar dissolves, then simmer over medium-high heat for about 20 minutes. You want the jam to get thicker and coat the back of a wooden spoon. Remove from heat, pour into glass jars, and allow the jam to cool. Then, store in the refrigerator for three weeks or the freezer for up to six months.

Ways to enjoy

Cherry jam is delicious smeared on toast or used in a PB&J, but Brondo points out that it’s also a tasty topping on plain Greek yogurt or spooned over vanilla ice cream.

Dry Them

dried cherry berries on a dark background
Slow and steady wins the race. To dry cherries, they need to sizzle for six to 12 hours.

uladzimir_likmanGetty Images

How to do it

Wash, dry, and remove the stems and pits from the cherries. Preheat your oven to 140°F and put the cherries on a baking sheet. Bake for six to 12 hours or until they’re dry. (If you have a food dehydrator, that’s an easier method you can also use.) Store the dried cherries in a plastic bag in a cool, dark place for 6 to 12 months.

Ways to enjoy

Brondo likes to snack on these guys straight out of the bag, add them to a trail mix or granola recipe, or sprinkle them on top of salads.

This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. You may be able to find more information about this and similar content at piano.io

- Advertisement -

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.