Cherries - my favourite fruit - juicy, sweet and very firm. Great for eating fresh! There's only 2 cherry seasons for my fixation on fresh cherry. It's now the seasons for USA cherries... (year end's from Australia, thanks for the globalisation!)
If you have not fallen for cherries, there's 6 good reasons why it's time to load up:
- Prevent and fight cancer: They contain queritrin (which is a potent anticancer agent). They also contain ellagic acid, which experts believe is one of the most useful compounds for cancer prevention. Cherries are a rich source of healthy antioxidants helping to repair damaged cells in the body. Another compound found in cherries is perillyl alcohol (POH), which is very effective in reducing the occurrence of all types of cancer. Stopping the spread of cancerous cells by depriving them of the crucial proteins they require in order to grow.
- Fight Inflammation: Did you know that inflammation is a secret killer? Inflammation is the body's first defense against infection...but when it goes awry, it can lead to..
....and a host of other diseases.
- Pain relief: containing anthocyanin and bioflavonoids. What are they?
Well they are compounds that produce a similar effect to that of aspirin or ibuprofen. These compounds can relieve or prevent head and body aches, and even ease the symptoms of arthritis and gout.
- Sleep Easy: Have trouble sleeping? Melatonin is a natural sleep aid. It is an antioxidant and will help to regulate your sleeping and waking patterns. It's found in the human body...but only in small quantities. Guess what...our little friends cherries have an abundance of melatonin in them. Cherries also help your circadian Rhythms; well it is basically your sleep patterns and timing within a 24hour day.
- Fight premature ageing: Cherries contains the compounds isoqueritrin and queritrin that work to eliminate the byproducts of oxidative stress and thereby slowing the ageing process.
- Lower levels of uric acid in the blood, which is one of the most common causes of gout pain. A study at the University of California Davis showed that consuming a serving of cherries daily significantly lowered the blood uric acid levels of women by as much as 15 percent, and while the participants in the study were given fresh cherries to eat, a serving of dried cherries or cherry juice can have just as significant an impact.
Me? I have a carton of cherries... I have been packing them to snack at work, and last night, I made it into black forest cupcake. The recipe yields a rich and delightfully moist batter (like Lana Cake)... complemented nicely by the chopped cherries!
This recipe can be made manually cos there's very little whisking. Personally I find this better when served warm but colleagues who were served this cuppie the next day said it was good!
The fudge is convenient - no need to wait till the cupcake is cool before frosting. I slapped it on as soon as the cupcake was out of the oven. It melted initially, then firmed up when cooled. It held up the large cherry very well!
Yield: 12 cupcakes
125ml buttermilk (I use milk powder+water+1.5 tbsp vinegar)
1 tsp vanilla essence
120g all-purpose plain flour
20g cocoa powder (2 tbsp)
1-1/2 tsp bicarbonate soda
110g sugar ( I use 100g)
1) Preheat oven and line muffin tray.
2) Sift flour, cocoa and bicarbonate soda together.
3) Place the sugar and sifted flour mixture into a bowl.
4) In a separate bowl, mix the mayo, vanilla essence and buttermilk till smooth.
5) Add mayo mixture to the flour and mix till the batter is smooth.
6) Pour mixture into prepared pan (80% mark) and bake at 170 deg C for 20-25 minutes.
Note: Cake will shrink slightly when cool.
recipe source: Kitchen Capers.
3 tbsp icing sugar-sifted
1 tsp cornflour
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp cold water
Mix cocoa, icing sugar, cornflour and butter nicely.
Add the cold water and mix well.
It should be a thick mixture. Spread on when the cupcake is hot.