Red cherries are a celebrated summer fruit, favourites due to their freshness, vibrant red colour and extraordinary flavour. Harvesting is happening now, from the middle of May, and continues until the end of June. Fresh cherries are used by cooks and bakers in their dishes when cherries are in season, whereas throughout the rest of the year professionals find excellent alternatives in preserved cherries or cherries in light syrup.
The main compounds of red cherries are carbohydrates (especially fructose), potassium, vitamin C, folic acid, provitamin A, vitamins B1 and B6, among others. They are also a great source of fibre, are low in calories and are rich in antioxidants, all factors that prove that what we have before us is a remarkable fruit, very good for our health, available for all to enjoy, with perhaps only those who suffer from kidney stones or digestive issues having to moderate their intake of this super fruit.
Cherries are good for our health and even reduce the symptoms of some illnesses. Here are some examples of their benefits.
Illnesses and complaints that red cherries can help alleviate
- Heart disease: cherries are rich in potassium, quercetin and anthocyanin, all of which are beneficial for the cardiovascular system and offer better protection from heart attacks, angina and high blood pressure.
- Blood disorders: eating cherries helps lower cholesterol levels, blood triglycerides levels and also prevents fatty liver. They also help reduce the risk of getting gallstones.
- Arthritis and rheumatism: cherries have antioxidant components, anti-inflammatory properties and colon cleansing abilities. They are eaten by patients with these conditions to help alleviate pain.
- Cancer: cherries contain elements such as anthocyanins, and antioxidant which slows cell deterioration, vitamin C and ellagic acid, as well as an abundance of fibre, all of which protect cells and help prevent cancer.
- Obesity: nutritionists include cherries in the diets of patients who want to lose weight, due to their high water content, fibre and potassium and their low levels of sodium and fat. Cherries are diuretic and work as a natural laxative, both of which helps with weight loss.
- Diabetes: Both fructose and anthocyanin reduce resistance to insulin and increase tolerance to glucose, which is why those who suffer from diabetes are allowed to eat cherries as they reduce blood glucose levels. It reduces the risk of developing glaucoma and suffering from retinopathy.
- Unhealthy gut: cherries help improve intestinal movements and overcome colon illnesses such as constipation or bloating.
- Gout: cherries reduce uric acid in the body and those who suffer from gout eat cherries in order to alleviate the symptoms.
- Alzheimer’s: Both flavonoids and proanthocyanins protect neurons and help fight dementia. They also help lower stress, something which many people in the West suffer from in this day and age.
As well as having all the above-mentioned health benefits, many experts believe that cherries slow down aging because they protect both the heart and the nervous system. Another benefit is that they contain vitamins A & C which protect the skin and keep it smooth and taut.
Cherries also contain melatonin which is great at helping regulate sleep patterns and reduce the effects of jet lag. Finally, their phytochemicals stop enzymes causing swelling, thus reducing pain in any sort of injury.
Hints on how to enjoy cherries in light syrup
Red cherries are usually served fresh, although they are sometimes used in desserts such as cakes, confectionary, mousse, cupcakes etc; or in jams, compote, sauces, salads or sorbets.
Professional bakers and chefs use cherries in light syrup to decorate cakes and tarts; however they also use them in savoury dishes such as with foie gras, enhancing the sweet and savoury contrast. Cherries in light syrup are often served at breakfast buffets in many hotels, restaurants and catering companies.
Here at Lazaya we have our own cherry orchards and have begun harvesting our top-quality red cherries to use as the main ingredient for delicious cherries in syrup, one of the star products in our catalogue.
We offer cherries of different sizes in our catalogue. We also sell them whole or chopped, pitted or with their stone, with or without a stem, sweetened or sugar free. Our range suits all master baker requirements. Do not hesitate to get in touch to chat about our products, we would be delighted to hear from you.