Pie Cherries from the CSA!

Yesterday we got an email from Grant Family Farms that our fruit share this week would be pitted pie cherries, much to our excitement.  It is hard to find good pie cherries unless you have your own tree, and while I love Bing and Ranier cherries to eat fresh, I love to cook with tart varieties.  Today Harrison went to pick up the loot and came back with a positively huge container of cherries (half are in the freezer–yay!), so I decided to make Cherry Shortcakes with Ginger-Mascarpone Cream.  Mmmmmm….yes, they are awesome.  First I measured out three cups of those beautiful cherries:

I cooked them down slightly with a half cup of sugar and set aside to cool.  If you like a thicker sauce you can add in some arrowroot or corn starch, but I like the natural juice texture.

Next I whipped up the Ginger-Mascarpone Cream.  I made a quick trip to the Cheese Importers earlier in the day to pick up the Mascarpone and some good butter for the shortcakes.  Mascarpone, if you haven’t had it, is like what cream cheese would taste like in its wildest dreams–really creamy, slightly nutty and sweet, and perfect for desserts.  I whipped up eight ounces of mascarpone with 1/4 cup of powdered sugar and 1/4 cup of ginger preserves, using my Kitchenaid (a regular hand mixer would work, as would a good old fork):

I let that chill while I made the shortcakes.  You can use any type of cakes you like of course, including the little spongy type (not a fan, personally), but I like an old-fashioned biscuit shortcake.  Here is my basic recipe, with baking times that reflect high altitude:

Shortcake Biscuits
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
 
Ingredients
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 6 tablespoon butter, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup milk
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Stir together the flour, baking powder, and salt, and cut in the butter until it resembles coarse meal. Stir in the vanilla and milk until soft dough forms. Use your hands to form six rounds of dough and place them on a cookie sheet coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle the tops with coarse sugar, if desired (or brush with butter for a golden top, or just leave plain). Bake for about 30 minutes, or until light golden. Cool and split for shortcakes.
  2. To assemble, spoon some of the Ginger-Mascarpone Cream on the bottom, spoon fruit on top, top with biscuit top, and devour.

 

Thanks for reading,

-Angela

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9 Responses to Pie Cherries from the CSA!

  1. Yenta Mary July 27, 2010 at 1:35 am #

    OMG, those shortcakes look absolutely divine!!! And since we're in prime cherry season here in Michigan, I may just put some to use in my own batch … 🙂

  2. FRS July 27, 2010 at 2:29 am #

    Oh how I miss Michigan cherries! Last summer we were in Traverse City at peak cherry time and ate them until we could eat no more (so, lots and lots).

  3. Amy July 27, 2010 at 5:41 am #

    Thanks for the cherry recipe! I too just got my bucket'o'cherries from GFF today and have been pondering how I will use them. This looks like it fits the bill 🙂

  4. FRS July 27, 2010 at 1:29 pm #

    Amy, I hope you like it–I thought about pie but it was way too hot to leave the oven on so long, so this was my compromise! I am thinking of having some of the leftovers for breakfast…

  5. Anonymous July 29, 2010 at 2:53 am #

    How 'bout fennel? I'm going to turn it into pasta sauce but would love some other tips!

    This is JED, by the way. 🙂

  6. FRS July 29, 2010 at 3:08 am #

    I can work with fennel–I accept the challenge! Would I know you better as BD??

  7. Chef Dennis July 30, 2010 at 2:57 am #

    now those cherries look amazing…and I love marscapone! thats a dessert from heaven!

  8. FRS July 30, 2010 at 3:29 am #

    Thanks Chef Dennis! Just checked out your blog–those squash look fantastic.

  9. Anonymous August 7, 2010 at 8:01 pm #

    In answer to the July 28th query, yes. 🙂 Sorry–I've been in vacation mode and didn't see the question!

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