Monday, July 18, 2011

The Cherry In My Pie...

... and in everything else... YUM!
Cherries have a lot of reasons to boast, after all, they do have a long list of nutritional goodness. These small little treats pack a powerful punch for their low calorie count. They are crammed with nutrients that help fight inflammation and cancer. And, in case that wasn't enough, two compounds contained in cherries, have been shown to inhibit the growth of tumors and even cause cancer cells die. These little red jewels also have antiviral and antibacterial properties.

Aim to eat a cup of fresh cherries every day while they are in season, and when they are not... make sure you have a stash in your freezer.  Doing this can help your body reduce inflammation and curb pain. Regular consumption may also lower risk of heart attack and stroke.


Keep a bag of frozen cherries in your freezer year round.  Frozen cherries retain 100% of their nutritional value and make a great addition to smoothies, yogurt, and oatmeal.

Buy organic or wash thoroughly, since conventionally grown cherries can be high in pesticides.

Cherry Chocolate Chip Cupcake
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup finely chopped fresh pitted cherries
1/2  cup mini chocolate chips (optional)

-Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line your cupcake/muffin cups with paper liners. Set aside.
-In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt.
-In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar.
-Add egg, and extracts and combine well. Working in two or three additions, gradually mix in the dry ingredients, alternating with the buttermilk and ending with an addition of the last of the flour mixture.
-Stir in chopped cherries & chocolate chips.
-Fill prepared cupcake liners 3/4 full. Bake for 16-19 minutes, or until the toothpick inserted into the center of the cupcake comes out clean. Let the cupcakes cool before transferring them to a wire rack. Wait until they are completely cooled before frosting.

Chicken with Cherry Sauce
1 pound fresh or frozen pitted sweet cherries

1/2 cup orange juice
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup honey
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 garlic clove, minced
2 teaspoons minced fresh gingerroot
4 chicken breasts
1 tablespoon butter

-Set aside 3/4 cup cherries.
-In a blender, combine orange juice, remaining cherries, soy sauce, honey, lemon juice, garlic and ginger; set aside.
-In a large skillet over medium heat, brown chicken on all sides in butter.
-Place chicken skin side down in an ungreased baking dish. Top with cherry sauce.
-Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 20 minutes; turn chicken. Top with reserved cherries.
-Bake, uncovered, 25-30 minutes longer or until chicken juices run clear.

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