Prunus cerasus
ROSACEAE, The Rose family

It’s the best cherry season in years..

M. and I biked to the farmer’s market yesterday and got pounds of ‘Samba’, ‘Rainier’ and pie cherries. On the way home we took at break at The Hop and Vine and had a Kriek Lambic, a Belgian cherry beer. At home, in the breezy kitchen, I canned the sweet red cherries (Prunus avium) in syrup, steeped the Rainiers in a Rose wine reduction and put them up. I found the recipe in The Oregonian.

Originally uploaded by mulysa_may

Then made a pie. I must say, sweet cherries are fun to eat, but really, sour cherries are sublime. I guess I like food that have some transcendent quality: take barely edible fruits and toss them in sugar and flour bake them in a pastry and the result is a constellation of jewel-like wonders with gooey, heavenly sweet-tart paste squishing out between them. Canned, boughten “pie filling” cannot approximate.

Here is my cherry pie recipe if you want to experience for yourself:

Pit 2 lb. pie cherries like ‘Meteor’, ‘Montmorency’, ‘North Star’ (about 4 cups). A large bent paper clip makes this go quickly if you don’t have a cherry pitter.
Mix 1 cup fine sugar (or more, to taste) and 1/3 flour. Toss with cherries and mound into pie crust. Sprinkle with 1 tsp. almond extract (optional).

Place top crust over fruit and trim and flute edges. Use extra dough to make cut-outs and paste with a little water on top of pie, or cut a design into the top with a sharp paring knife. To make it sparkly, brush the top with water then sprinkle with sugar.

Bake at 425 F for 30 minutes, then cover with foil and bake another 10-15 minutes until juices are bubbly and the top is near golden.

About Mulysa

I love my work as a landscape designer and artist. When I'm not planning homesteads or working in the studio, you'll find me hiking, photographing, gardening, baking, cooking vegetarian meals with friends, reading and working on sustainability issues...with my baby on my hip in Portland, Oregon.
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