Dietitian's Top Pick: Oregon Cherries and a Cherry Crisp Recipe

Are you getting ready to celebrate Valentine’s Day?  How do you usually celebrate?  Do you go out to a nice dinner, pick up something delicious at Market Street, or prepare a homemade meal?  We usually keep it low key at my house.  I like to make a nice dinner AND a dessert.  Dessert is a treat at our house, so I want something we will really enjoy.  As I started thinking about what I would prepare, I looked at several recipes.  I decided to go a little different this year and use some cherries to make a Tart Cherry Apple Crisp. Since cherries are not in season right now, I opted to use canned Oregon Red Tart Cherries.  These are a Dietitian’s Top Pick with a NuVal score of 96!  Cherries are full of antioxidants and may help slow cardiovascular disease.  They are also a great source of potassium, which can help lower blood pressure by helping to offset some of the harmful effects of sodium.   Cherries are also a great source of fiber and vitamin C, also part of a heart smart diet! 

Tart Cherry Apple Crisp 

Tart Cherry Apple Crisp

Ingredients you will need:

In a bowl, toss together the cherries, apple, ¼ cup brown sugar, and vanilla

In a cup, whisk the cornstarch and juice together

Add juice mixture to cherries and gently stir

Pour cherry mixture into an 8-inch square baking dish that has been coated with nonstick cooking spray; set aside.  In a small bowl, mix together the remaining ingredients; spread over cherries.

Bake in a 400 degree oven for 30 minutes; remove and let cool slightly.  Serve and enjoy!

Tart Cherry Apple Crisp

2 cans red tart cherries, drained (but reserve ½ cup of juice)
 1 green apple, cored and diced
 1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
 1/2 teaspoon vanilla (optional)
 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch or arrowroot powder
 1/2 cup cherry juice (reserved when draining can)
 Nonstick cooking spray
 1/4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
 1/4 cup brown sugar
 1/4 cup pecans or walnuts, chopped
 2 tablespoons whole-wheat pastry flour
 3 tablespoons canola oil
 1/4 teaspoon salt (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
2. In a bowl, toss together the cherries, apple, brown sugar, and vanilla.
3. In a cup, whisk the cornstarch and juice and add to the fruit mixture, stirring well.
4. Pour the mixture into an 8-inch-square baking dish sprayed with nonstick cooking spray.
5. Mix together the remaining ingredients. Crumble the mixture on top of the fruit.
 6. Bake for 30 minutes; remove from oven. Serve warm or cold.

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