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10 ways with cherries

Antioxidant-filled cherries are always a highlight of summer. Grab them while you can!

1. Cherry salsa

In 10 minutes you’ve got a great accompaniment to pork recipes. Simply combine zest of 1 lemon, 600g fresh cherries (pitted), 1/2 red onion (finely chopped), 1 teaspoon grated ginger and 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil. Mix well then serve with pork fillets or a roast.

2. Alternative cheese and crackers

Blend chopped cherries and chopped almonds through reduced-fat cream cheese and spread onto water crackers for a tasty (party) snack.

3. Quinoa cherry salad

Bring 1 cup quinoa and 2 cups no-added-salt stock to the boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 20 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Meanwhile, sauté 2 cups thinly sliced leek or brown onion, 1/2 teaspoon chopped sage and 1 cup chopped celery for 10 minutes or until tender. Season with pepper. Add 1 minced garlic clove and cook for 2 more minutes. Stir through cooked quinoa with 1/4 cup chopped walnuts and 1 cup chopped fresh cherries. Serve immediately.

4. Summer fruit salad

In a large bowl combine chopped peaches, chopped plums, blueberries and pitted cherries. Sprinkle with toasted slivered almonds to serve.

5. Cherry compote

Cook 1 cup pitted cherries in a little simmering water until soft. Add 2 teaspoons sugar. Continue simmering until sugar has dissolved. Allow to cool slightly then serve cherry compote over low-fat ice-cream or stir through low-fat plain yoghurt.

6. Cherry and walnut salad

For a simple summer salad, combine baby spinach or rocket, thinly sliced red onion, chopped walnuts, halved cherry tomatoes, goats’ cheese and halved, pitted cherries in a large bowl. Dress salad with a vinaigrette made from a little olive oil, orange juice and grainy mustard.

7. Bran muffins

Next time you make bran muffins, add chopped cherries and 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice to batter and bake as directed.

8. Batter booster

Add 100g cherries (chopped, pitted) to pancake or cake batter (eg. add them to one of our chocolate cake recipes for an indulgent treat).

9. Cherry chicken stuffing

Combine 1/2 cup pitted, coarsely chopped cherries, 1/4 onion (diced) and 1 teaspoon each chopped fresh sage and thyme. Make a horizontal slit in the side of 2 chicken breasts and fill with cherry mixture. ‘Seal’ opening closed with toothpicks. Lightly spray chicken with oil and grill until cooked through.

10. Pear-apple-cherry crumble

Combine 2 chopped pears, 1 large chopped, peeled apple and 25 pitted cherries in a baking dish. Sprinkle 1 teaspoon sugar over fruit. In a separate bowl, combine 3/4 cup natural muesli with 2 tablespoons each brown sugar and softened reduced-fat spread. With clean hands, mix until well combined. Scatter crumble mixture over fruit then bake at 180°C for 15 minutes or until crisp and golden.