What’s So Great About Tart Cherries?
What’s ruby red, has a tangy taste, and is bursting with healthy antioxidants? If you guessed Montmorency cherries – otherwise known as “tart cherries” -- you’ve already discovered a delicious part of today’s healthy diet.
Washington State is one of the top producers of these all natural, nutritional wonders, known as “the healing fruit”. And right in the middle of Washington’s prime farm land stands the 350-acre site of Taylor Orchards, the source for Tart Is Smart™ cherry juices and concentrates.
The secret of tart cherries is in the pigment which gives them their rich red hue, according to the Cherry Marketing Institute (CMI). The “anthocyanins” contained here have excellent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Ongoing studies show that tart cherries, which contain more antioxidants than blueberries, raspberries or oranges, promote a healthy mind and healthy body. The nutrients contained in tart cherries also may help relieve the pain of arthritis, gout, headaches – even fibromyalgia.
Following the mid-summer harvest, tart cherries are seldom sold fresh, because their color easily changes when exposed to light. That’s why you’ll find them in juice and juice concentrates, canned, frozen or dried, for convenient use. Juice concentrates make a great addition to meat sauces, ice cream, smoothies and ice tea. In other forms, tart cherries may be used for tasty pies and turnovers, muffins, cookies and dry cereal.
Next time you sit down to a mouth-watering piece of cherry pie, remember that the average tart cherry tree produces about 7,000 of these “pie cherries” each year! That’s enough to make 28 pies, says the CMI.
So whether you’re celebrating National Cherry Month in February, toasting to your health, or planning to bake a treat for someone special, remember the natural goodness of tart cherries.