In season: June to August
Good for You: Sweet cherries get their color from anthocyanins, which are found in red and blue fruits and vegetables. These anti-oxidants help protect against cancer and heart disease, as well as reduce postrun inflammation. One cup of pitted cherries contains three grams of fiber, two grams of protein, and fewer than 100 calories.
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Get the Best: Choose cherries that have firm flesh and a glossy sheen, free of blemishes or bruises. Bing cherries are among the most popular of the sweet varieties and have a deep red color. Another is Rainier—its skin is golden yellow with a red blush. Store cherries unwashed in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for up to four days.
Video: Add cherry juice to this drink for an extra-potent, postrun recovery drink.
Kitchen Simple: Fresh sweet cherries provide a burst of juicy flavor in homemade muffins. (Search: cherry muffin recipes) For a sweet-spicy salsa, combine chopped cherries with green onions, cilantro, garlic, and jalapeno. Or make a postrun smoothie by blending together 1 cup pitted cherries, 3/4 cup plain yogurt, 2 tablespoons honey, and 3/4 cup ice.
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