Whole Story

The Official Whole Foods Market® Blog

A Simply Sweet Cherry Fest

I’ve got some juicy, plump, sweet news to share: it’s time for cherries, especially at Whole Foods Market®! Cherry Fest is our annual celebration of fresh cherries, one of the most anticipated fruits we sell. Whether creating something savory or sweet, or simply diving into a heaping bowl of chilled cherries, now is the time to celebrate this peak-season fruit and our stores are the place to find them. We source the best cherries – and plenty of them – so our stores have enough cherries for all of your cherry needs.

Now that you know where to find them, let’s talk about how to select the tastiest cherries. Here are a five steps to help you…well, you know, cherry-pick the best of the basket.

How to Pick a Sweet Cherry

Check the stems. Fresh cherries have green stems

Give them a feel. Cherries should be firm, no soft spots or bruising

Look for the good color. Depending on variety, ideally they should be deep, bright red to mahogany

Give them the once over. Fruit should be free of insect damage and pitting (little indentations caused by dehydration)

Give them a taste. Be sure the amount of sugar in the fruit is high

Oh, and size matters for cherries. Keep in mind the larger the cherry, the more fruit (less pit) you get. We want you to celebrate Cherry Fest in a big way too, so we’re giving away a case of cherries to five randomly selected winners! Yes, a whole case of cherries! (“How much is a case?” you ask. It’s a lot – about 10 pounds of cherries – enough to bake ‘em, preserve ‘em, dry ‘em, freeze ‘em and still have some for snacking on.) All we want to know is what you would do with a whole case of cherries. UPDATE: Thank you to everyone that entered. Congratulations to our winners, Patti, Becky and Vanessa.

Tell us in the comments below by July 11 and you could win! 

The fine print: These are red Washington cherries and will be shipped directly to you from our farmer partners. Depending on availability and quality, they may be organic or conventional. No purchase necessary. Promotion ends July 11, 2012, 11:59 PM CDT. Must be a legal resident of the US or Canada (except in Quebec, where it is void) age 18 or older to participate. Taxes on prize, if applicable, are the responsibility of the winner. Employees of Whole Foods Market, Inc., are not eligible.

Void where prohibited.

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10216 comments

Comments

Nina says …

I would make a pork with a cherry glaze. Also cherry pie, of course, maybe even a cherry walnut loaf cake, and even experiment with some type of sweet salsa/relish with cherries . I could go on and on! And then I would share with my family because who doesn't like cherries on a hot summer day!

Janelle says …

My coworkers love when I bring in baked goods to work so I would bake a few batches of cherry muffins and maybe save some frozen to make cherry crisp when my family visits from out of town.

Rachel says …

Some baking, some jamming, and definitely some gorging on as many fresh cherries as we could stand!

Tamara Johnson says …

I would eat them one by one till they were all gone I love cherries

Martha Reed says …

Eat them!

Nina says …

Eat them all!!!!!!!!!!!

Sarah says …

How about cherry clafoutis? And cherry granita....and cherry chutney. Mmmmm! I LOVE cherries, they are my favorite fruit of all!

Jen Langdon says …

I would make a batch of jam!

Kristina says …

Cherries jubilee for my friends!

brenda r says …

I would share with all my Zumba sisters and have a brunch at my house after class.

Valerie Gould' says …

I would enjoy them whole over ice cream. Or sliced in some tea.

Stephanie says …

I have been itching to try my hand at canning and I would LOVE to make Cherry Preseves! That is, if I dont eat them all fresh first! :)

Rachel B says …

I would bake a bunch of pies for me and neighbors and save some also for entertaining in the fall. I love cherries of all kinds.

Katie says …

Freeze them, baked them, put them in smoothies. But my favorite is just eating them plain at the beach!

Joyce S says …

Cherries are a delicious free food for me on Weight Watchers. What a treat this would be!

Danielle J says …

Cherry pies!

Pat Cohen says …

Eat them in pies or plain and share with family and friends...yummy

Anthony says …

I would give some to my friends, families and coworkers and it would be cherrrerific !!! :)

Leslie says …

I would bake a pie and then can the rest. Either whole or as jam. Yum!

Vanessa says …

Eat a few everyday, bake with them, and share with family and friends!

Juli says …

Chilled cherry soup! I've had it once before but have been wanting to make it again. Amazing!! Cherries are often not in the budget but maybe I'll win so I can make it :)

Neel Gupta says …

I'd go old school, with some 70's-era Cherries jubilee! Except I'd use grains of paradise in there. A lovely combination.

Alissa says …

Cherry salsa all the way. Then the rest fresh!

Angela W says …

I would eat til my tummy hurt (like I did as a little girl) then I would freeze the rest so I can make Cherry Cobblers all year long for my family and neighbors!

Nicholas says …

My wife would love these as a great snack and in her salad.

Jeannie says …

I would enjoy them in the best way, FRESH in hand and with FRIENDS!

Debra Schramm says …

I would eat as many as I could while they were fresh and then I'd pit and freeze the rest to make fabulous smoothies!

nina gilbert says …

my family and i could probably eat a whole case of cherries-----just in their beautiful, raw form! i'd probably drop some into our daily juices and smoothies, too. cherries are my ultimate favorite food!

David Li says …

make some black cherry frozen yogurt to cool down the summer heat

Caitlin says …

I'd make a pie and some jam, muffins, dry some, freeze some, and eat some just as they are!

Jenn says …

I would freeze some, give some to friends /family, and use the rest on amazing cherry recipes.

Amber Beatty says …

we just bought a dehydrator to dry out a bunch of figs from my grandparents' back yard. planning on using them in Christmas "steamed pudding" later in the year. would love to do the same with a bunch of cherries!!

Kris says …

I would create new recipes to share with my friends and readers and to enjoy myself!

Corly Jones says …

I'd share them with the four kiddos - but save a bunch to make a gigantic batch of cherry mojitos and throw a block party - Yum!

Nancy Nichol says …

I would brew a cherry stout and eat what is left.

Amy says …

I have a small tribe - so i suspect many would be EATEN!! But any 'leftovers' - some jam, freeze some to enjoy in baked good in the winter. YUM

steven says …

First I would take out enough to make my sister a pie for her birthday. Then I would make some tarts for the rest of the family but save a few to put over ice cream for myself!

bgv says …

I would eat them all day, share with my family and bring them to work for a treat.

Jon says …

Cherry jam with ricotta on grilled bread (stolen from ABC kitchen)

Ceej says …

A case is so many cherries!! I would make some into preserves, some would go into a pie, but the LUCKIEST (I think) would be made into a sauce/chutney to be served over pork chops! My husband did this with some cherries last week and it blew my mind.

Myra says …

The recipes are endless when it comes to fresh cherries!! Smoothies, pies....fantastic cool and refreshing drinks! Oh and did I mention an icing made of pureed cherries!!! Bring them ON!! :)

L says …

Eat them all in one sitting, probably...

Gayle Bernacki says …

I would make Cherry jam with my friend, Trudy

irene1514 says …

OH My ! A CASE OF MY FAVORITE FRUIT. SNACK, BACK AND OF COURSE CHERRIES JUBILEE!!!!! SO MUCH TO DO WITH THEM SHARE A JAR OF CHERRIES OR PRESERVES. THEY WOULD HAVE TO BE USED QUITE FAST AND I CAN'T THINK OF ANYTHING BETTER THAN SHARING THEM WITH LOVED ONES.

Heidi Maguire says …

I will be having a party at my house July 3rd to watch the fireworks that will be launched nearby. I would put all the cherries out for everyone to enjoy at this party.

heather says …

eat them fresh right out of a bowl!

Karen says …

I'd bring them in to work and share something healthy for a change. We have lots of breads and cookies in here all the time so this would be a refreshing change!

Anne Robichaux says …

I'd have them on their own, over ice cream, in yoghurt, I'd make a cherry sloop, might try cherry smoothies (throw in some rum too)!

Sue says …

I would share them with my friends at work to just munch on plain and fresh - no need to do a thing to them except wash them!

Natalie says …

I would probably eat some, give them to friends, and freeze a bunch in some form to be used in desserts for my wedding reception in December!

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