In the sour cherry world, Montmorency has reigned for a while as king. But there are other sour cherries out there that are looking to give the king a challenge. The Balaton cherry was introduced to the United States by Dr. Amy Iezzoni from Michigan State University. It originated in Hungary.
When compared to a Montmorency, the Balaton tends to be larger, more firm, and sweeter than the Montmorency. Even thought it is sweeter, don’t be mistake, this is still a sour cherry. It’s color is a dark red with a little red interior.
Their have been a lot of health claims with Balaton cherries. We do know they contain vitamins A and C, melatonin and anthocyanins. Some believe that they help with sleep disorders, reducing chances of health disease, managing diabetes to just name a few. This isn’t a gurantee, but if you are concerned about any of these, then it definately wouldn’t hurt to add more cherries particularly Balatons to your diet.
If you have a chance to get your hands on some fresh Balaton cherries, make sure you do. The season is short, and they are widely available in their fresh form. I was fortunate enough to get some at my local farmer’s market.
Below you will find a video of a farmer in Massachusetts talking about this Balaton cherries, along with another variety.