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Walnut Creek Magazine

Cherry Season Is On: Recipe For Some Sweet Comfort

Jun 10, 2021 09:53AM ● By Pam Kessler
(Serves 6)

4 pounds pitted cherries
Grated zest and juice of 1 orange
1 tablespoon Kirsch
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon Flour
2/3 cup toasted walnuts or pecans (or combination)
1 ¼ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
6 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
1 ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
12 tablespoons (1 ½ sticks) unsalted chilled butter

DIRECTIONS: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a medium sized mixing bowl combine pitted cherries with sugar and flour. Grate orange zest: squeeze the juice and mix in with cherries and Kirsch. Stir to combine. Set aside while you prepare the topping. Chop nuts coarsely. Cut butter into cubes. Combine all ingredients, except butter, in a mixer and combine on #1 speed. Add butter and continue mixing on slow speed until combined and butter is in small clumps. Grease a ceramic baking dish with butter (use one just big enough to hold ingredients) Transfer cherries into ceramic baker and mound into center. Spoon topping over cherries and gently press down to form a crust, covering the fruit completely. Place dish on a cookie sheet and bake for 45 to 55 minutes until the fruit appears bubbly and the juices are slightly thickened, and the topping is golden brown. Serve warm with ice cream.
CHERRY PITTING TIPS: If you who don't pit cherries very often or own a cherry pitter, here's a trick: use clean needle nose pliers. Once you get the swing of things it goes fast. Insert the pliers into the side of the cherry at a 90-degree angle - straight in the side. Not through the top, not through the bottom. When you go in through the side, the pliers open just enough to get a grip on the pit at a comfortable angle and rip it right out. 
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