School has begun, leaves have started to change, and the temperature is dropping into the 90’s. Fall is here! With fall comes a new baking season and time to start prepping for my favorite desserts. I am a sucker for cherries. As soon as I see them in the summer I start collecting and eating—no cherry is beneath my notice. I found cherries in Arizona, in Utah, in Wyoming, in Montana and in California. I even had my sister-in-law bring me Rainier cherries from Washington!
I ate them by the bagful. Soon however, I had to do something besides just eating the cherries, so I started to experiment. I made pies, I made turnovers, I made pop-tarts. Out of all the experimenting I made this delicious filling, which I will definitely make again. My husband, who doesn’t even like cherry pie, declared this filling his favorite—he liked it even better than his old favorite, his mom’s crumbly top apple pie. Again, this is a very versatile filling: use it in pies, in danishes, as an ice cream topping, or just eat it by the spoonful if you like. Enjoy!
Recipe courtesy of Thomas Keller – Ad Hoc at Home
2 tbs corn starch
2 tbs water
7 cups sweet cherries, pitted (fresh is best but frozen can be used)
¾ – 1 cup granulated sugar
1 tbs vanilla extract
Cinnamon to taste
Almond extract to taste
- Combine cornstarch and water in bowl to form a slurry.
- Take 2 cups of cherries and place in blender and puree.
- Combine puree and sugar (¾ cup sugar if cherries are sweet, 1 cup sugar if more tart) in medium sauce pan.
- Bring to a simmer over medium heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
- Stir often to prevent burning.
- Reduce heat to medium-low and. while stirring. add slurry.
- Bring to a boil and cook until mixture becomes translucent.
- Add vanilla and allow mixture to cool.
- Combine remaining cherries and puree and use to fill pie crusts or puff pastry.
- Cook pie or pastry as directed.