IN SEASON: CHERRIES
For cherry lovers, California’s season is short and sweet––only six weeks—typically from early May through June. While there are over 1000 types of cherries, deep red Bings burst with flavor when eating them fresh or crushing it in a pie or crisp dessert recipe. Local farmers' markets are the best place to shop for tasty local produce.
EASY AS CHERRY PIE
Bottom Crust: (9-inch) refrigerated pie crust in pie pan
5 cups fresh California Bing cherries, pitted
1 cup sugar
1 T. flour
1⁄2 cup regular rolled oats
1/4 cup white sugar
2 T. all-purpose flour
1 T. melted butter
1⁄2 tsp ground cinnamon
1⁄2 tsp salt
DIRECTIONS: Preheat oven to 400 F. Remove pie crust from refrigerator. Pit cherries. Use a cherry pitting tool and wear an apron to protect clothing from juice spatter. Combine pitted cherries in a bowl with sugar and flour. Mix well and spoon into prepared pie crust. Combine crumb topping ingredients in a small bowl and mix until crumbly. Sprinkle over top of cherry filling. Place in oven and bake for 15 minutes at 400 F. Reduce temperature to 325 F and bake for another 30 to 40 minutes until bubbly and browned on top. Cool to room temperature and top with vanilla ice cream.
CHERRY ALMOND CRISP
2 1/4 pound Bing cherries, pitted
3/4 cup sugar
3 T. quick cooking tapioca
2 T. water
1 1/2 T. Kirsch (clear cherry Brandy) or brandy
2/3 cup whole almonds, chopped
1/4 tsp. almond extract
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup old-fashioned oats
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 cup unsalted butter, diced
DIRECTIONS: Preheat oven 375 F. Generously butter 13 x 9 x 2" glass baking dish.
Combine all ingredients in a large bowl, toss to blend. Let stand 15 minutes
tossing occasionally. Transfer to baking dish. Bake until fruit is
tender and juices bubble thickly, about 50 minutes. Cool.
For topping: Place almonds in medium bowl. Sprinkle with almond extract, toss to coat. Mix in flour, brown sugar, and salt. Add butter and rub in with fingertips until mixture resembles a coarse meal. Sprinkle topping over fruit. Bake until heated through and topping is golden brown, about 25 minutes. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.