Considering Dr. Oz is from my fatherland, it’s no surprise that his love for sour (or tart) cherries is bang on target with mine. You see, Happies, in Turkey (where he and my dad are both from) they are a big deal. They drink them, eat them and ahem, cherish them, knowing these sour little fruits are packed with goodness.
Image courtesy of foodinjars.com
While it’s sweet cherries that you see tumbling onto the floor at the grocery store around Christmas time, it’s the sour cherry that has slowly been building a loyal fan base behind its back.
1. Studies have shown that sour cherries have a lower GI than their sweet friends, as well as higher levels of Vitamin C and antioxidants. What does this mean for you? Well, they are bouncing with healthy benefits that help fight free radical damage (making your insides and outsides look and feel younger) as well as ward off winter colds and keep you full for longer.
2. Inflammation is one of the key causes of pain and sickness in the body. Sour cherries have been shown to reduce this. The secret lies in an enzyme held in the cherry that assists in muscle repair and pain relief. Amazing!
3. While the sour flavour isn’t for everyone, I honestly believe that they taste good. Health benefits aside, these tart little cherries can be juiced, dried or eaten fresh. Add them to your morning muesli or throw them into salads, fruit salad or, of course, a juicer. The hardest thing for us here in Oz is getting our hands on the fresh ones, but if all else fails, dried ones are available at most health food stores.
For a special treat, why not make a sour cherry pilaf?
Soak a handful of dried sour cherries in water and set aside. Alternatively, you can buy a can of sour cherries if need be.
Now add a small dollop of coconut oil to a hot saucepan. Then, add one cup of rinsed (and pre soaked) brown basmati rice and stir to coat in the oil. Let it cook through for a few seconds, before pouring in two cups of stock or water. Bring to the boil, cover, and turn down the heat. When cooked, remove the lid and cover it in a tea towel to absorb excess moisture. Don’t stir the rice! Leave it to sit for 10-15 minutes before stirring in your sour cherries and some slivered almonds. Serve with finely chopped mint and a side salad.
Yum, right? What do you think of the sour cherry?
Have you tried them?