Are you a fan of cherry season and fresh cherries? If that’s the case, you are in for a treat! Discover the various cherry varieties, their respective seasons, essential tips for pitting and storing cherries, and a delightful selection of recipes to try out. The cherry season typically spans from May to July, with sweet and sour cherries being harvested at different times. Keep reading to learn more about each type’s specific season and find fantastic recipes to savor the goodness of cherries.
Different Kinds of Cherries
Cherries are a beloved fruit enjoyed by people around the world. Bursting with sweet-tart flavors and a juicy texture, cherries are a popular fruit. In this blog post, we will dive into the fascinating world of cherries, exploring everything from their peak season and regional availability to tasty recipes.
When Are Cherries in Season?
Cherries typically have a limited growing season, making them all the more cherished when they do appear. The peak season for cherries varies depending on the type. In general, it spans from late spring to early summer. Cherries are at their prime from May to August in most regions. Sweet cherries are usually picked earlier in the season, while sour cherries are harvested a bit later.
Why Wait for Cherry Season?
Anticipation builds as cherry season approaches, and for a good reason! While it may be tempting to indulge in cherries year-round, waiting for their peak season offers several advantages. First, cherries are fresher and more flavorful when they are in season, having been allowed to ripen naturally on the tree. Additionally, purchasing cherries during their peak season often means supporting local farmers and enjoying lower prices.
Cherry Season by US State
Cherry cultivation in the United States is concentrated in several states, each contributing to the nation’s bountiful harvest. Here’s a quick overview of cherry season by state.
|U.S. State||Cherry Season|
|California||April, May, June, July|
|Colorado||June, July, August, September, October|
|Illinois||May, June, July|
|Kansas||May, June, July|
|Michigan||June, July, August|
|Missouri||May, June, July|
|New Hampshire||June, July|
|New York||June, July|
|North Carolina||May, June, July|
|North Dakota||July, August|
|Rhode Island||June, July|
|South Carolina||June, July|
|South Dakota||June, July|
|Utah||June, July, August|
|Virginia||May, June, July, August|
|Washington||June, July, August|
|Washington D.C.||June, July|
|West Virginia||June, July|
What to Make with Cherries
Cherries are versatile and great in many dishes. From sweet to savory, cherries can be used in a variety of culinary creations. Some popular cherry-infused dishes include:
- Cherry Pies and Cobblers: The classic cherry pie, with its flaky crust and juicy filling, is a timeless favorite. Cherry cobblers are equally delightful, offering a simpler yet no less scrumptious dessert option.
- Cherry Preserves: Capture the essence of the cherry season in a jar with homemade cherry preserves, perfect for spreading on toast or accompanying cheese platters.
- Cherry Smoothies: Blend fresh cherries with yogurt, milk, or plant-based alternatives for a refreshing and nutritious smoothie.
- Cherry-Glazed Meats: Their sweet-tart flavor pairs remarkably well with savory dishes like pork or chicken, creating delectable cherry glazes for a delightful twist.
Taste and Texture
Cherries boast a unique flavor profile, ranging from sweet to tangy, depending on the variety. Their delicate, juicy texture makes them a satisfying treat to bite into. Sweet cherries tend to be plump and firm, while sour cherries are slightly smaller and softer.
Two primary types of cherries dominate the market:
- Sweet Cherries: These cherries are best for eating fresh and come in various varieties like Bing, Rainier, and Lambert. They have a higher sugar content and are typically larger in size.
- Sour Cherries: As the name suggests, sour cherries are more tart and are perfect for baking and making preserves. Montmorency is a popular variety of sour cherries.
How to Pit Cherries
Pitting cherries can be a time-consuming task, but the reward is worth it. There are several methods to pit cherries, including using a cherry pitter, a paperclip, or even a sturdy drinking straw. Alternatively, carefully slicing the cherries in half and removing the pit with a knife can also work.
How to Store Cherries
To keep cherries fresh for as long as possible, store them in the refrigerator in a breathable container, such as a paper bag or a shallow bowl covered with plastic wrap. Remember to remove any spoiled cherries to prevent them from affecting the others.
Cherries offer a range of health benefits due to their nutritional content. Some of the key health benefits of cherries include:
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Depending on the region grown, cherry season is anywhere from April to October. The most common months are June and July.
June and July are the best months to buy cherries.
Yes, cherries are in season in California from April through July.
Cherries are mostly in season in June and July.
Cherries are grown all over the United States and Europe.
The easiest way to pit cherries is to use a cherry pitter.
Cherries are grown in several states across the United States. The primary cherry-producing states are Washington, Oregon, California, and Michigan.
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