The first of the Washington cherry crops arrived last week – to the delight of Anna Maria and me. We both sat with bowls of cherries in front of us, gorging like black bears on the glossy, merlot-colored fruit. From our local co-op we obtained boxes of Tieton Cherries, a variety that is extraordinarily large in size, quite firm, and intriguingly sweet – not too much, not too little, but J-U-S-T right.
While I’ve been content simply eating them “straight” for dessert after dinner, Anna Maria has been busily transforming them into breakfast desserts for our guests. Cherry Trifle, Cherry Frangipane Tart (cherry with a creamy almond filling), Angel Food cake with a Brandied Cherry Sauce, Cherry Torte (a sweet pastry crust base topped with cherries and a rich browned butter filling with a touch of lemon zest), or a simple bowl full of berries have all made an appearance at the breakfast table.
At the restaurant, Chef Alphonsine simmers a Balsamic Cherry Compote for our house-smoked duck entrée, and Chef Paul will be making some desserts for the restaurant as well. Maybe I can talk him into making a batch of cherry sorbet for me……or cherry amaretto ice cream……or chocolate cherry gelato…or our killer knock off of Cherry Garcia?….hummm….