Chokecherry

Chokecherry is a small fruit belonging to the berry and cherry family native to North America. The appearance of these delicious cherries ranges from red to dark purple in color. The fruit turns dark purplish black or red after over-ripening.

Chokeberry is round in shape and similar to a glass marble’s size having a mixed acidic and sweet taste. Specifically, the wild black cherry trees are home to insects like ugly nest caterpillar, fruit leafroller, chokecherry midge, etc. Therefore, they are simply considered as pests. However, it is an important plant with a lot of medicinal and edible benefits. The season of chokecherries starts from mid-August and remains till mid-October.

Other Names

  • Virginia bird cherry
  • Bitter cherry/berry
  • Prunus virginiana (scientific name)
  • Chokeberry
  • Black chokecherry
  • California chokecherry
  • Bilberry
  • Whiskey chokecherry
  • Eastern chokecherry
  • Bird cherry
  • Jamcherry
  • Red chokecherry
  • Chuckleyplum
  • Capulin
  • Wild black cherry
  • Western chokecherry
  • Rum chokecherry
  • Sloe tree
  • Wild cherry

Nutritional Content

Nutrition description of the fruit per cup is listed in the table:

Nutrients Amount
Vitamin B6 0.30492 mg
Vitamin E (Alpha-tocopherol) 0.539 mg
Vitamin C 8.47 mg
Calories 249 kcal
Thiamin 0.05236 mg
Riboflavin 0.26642 mg
Vitamin K 32.494 mcg
Folate 3.08 mcg
Niacin 0.96712 mg
Vitamin A 258.72 IU
Calcium 92.4 mg
Choline 16.478 mg
Iron 1.0626 mg
Folate, Food 3.08 mcg
Pantothenic Acid 0.61292 mg
Potassium 583.66 mg
Betaine 0.616 mg
Magnesium 41.58 mg
Copper 0.28644 mg
Zinc 0.5082 mg
Manganese 0.64218 mg
Sodium 7.7 mg
Phosphorus 103.18 mg
Sugars 14.4298g
Dietary Fiber 30.8g
Protein 4 .6816g
Total Carbohydrates 51.7748g
Fructose 6.699g
Water 93.5088g
Ash 1.4322g
Total Fat 2.6026g
Glucose 7.623g
Sucrose 0.1078g

Health Benefits

  • Containing phytonutrients, (flavonoids) it manages and nourishes several organs of the body besides boosting their functioning
  • Manganese present in wild cherry helps in maintenance of thyroid hormone functioning as well as nerves and bones
  • Vitamin C in the fruit boosts immunity
  • Includes a good amount of antioxidants that shield the body cells from the damages of free radicals

Side Effects

  • Can cause a mild headache
  • Over-consumption results in constipation and other abdominal problems
  • Increases toxicity in the stomach
  • Causes ulcers

Uses

Medicinal Uses

  • Cures nervous dyspepsia
  • Assists in the digestion process
  • Treats diarrhoea
  • Treats fever
  • Possess anti-viral and anti-bacterial features
  • Aids the treatment of convalescent debility
  • Improves and control the problem of gastritis
  • Extracts are beneficial in curing dry cough, whooping cough, and chronic cough

Edible Uses

  • Used to make cakes and pies
  • Jelly is prepared from the fruit
  • Essence is mixed with spirits and liquors for flavoring purpose
  • The bark extracts of this fruit are utilized in flavoring various preserved edible things and wine

Varieties

There are no specific types of this fruit. It is majorly categorized as eastern chokecherries and western chokecherries.

Recipes

  • Chokecherry-Rhubarb crisp
  • Juice
  • Pies and cakes
  • Jam and jellies
  •  Syrup
  • Chokecherry bounces
  • Over grilled peaches with chokecherries
  • Chokecherry tarts
  • Wine
  • Chokecherry apple butter

Interesting Facts

  • Tasty and nutritious fruit but its leaves and seeds are highly toxic in nature and can be fatal if consumed by anyone
  • He fruit has many medicinal uses in comparison to comestible ones
  • Not eaten raw due to its acidic taste
  • Similar to berries in appearance

How to store?

Firstly, detach chokecherries from the stems and rinse them with cold water. Now, you can keep the fruit in the refrigerator in a container for around a week.

References

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