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June 10th, 2009 | 10 Comments »

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I almost thought to do this as a Wordless Wednesday post, but I simply can’t be quiet about fresh cherries and when I get passionate and excited about a food, my hyper-articulate and descriptive nature fully reveals itself and well, I just can’t stop. Either talking about them or eating them.

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This time of year, I’m not even that picky about how much a bag of cherries will set me back. This is one fruit that I will splurge on when in season without even a blink of an eye. And it’s the easiest to consume too; just a wash under water, a bowl for the pits and stems and no white clothing. I’ve eaten them until I feel like one big round fat cherry myself, lips and fingertips stained purple. I rarely make anything with cherries; they just don’t last long enough for me to search for the perfect recipe, I have little patience for the mess and hassle of pitting them by hand and really, I struggle with feeling like I am wasting this precious summer treat by putting it in anything, making it into something other than what it is- a perfect, simple, nutritious and fabulous treat. You do a great deal of good for yourself to snack on fresh cherries- they are low in fat, cholesterol and sodium and contain high levels of antioxidants such as anthocyanins, quercetin and ellagic acid. They have high levels of vitamin C, fiber and anti-inflammatory properties. One cup has about 90 calories.

On or about the third bag of the dark and sweet red drupes that came into my kitchen, I started thinking about making something like cherry spoonfruit, or a cherry syrup to have on hand, then I began thinking about chocolate and cherries. Pretty soon, it was Chocolate Cherry Pancakes for dinner, with fresh and warm cherry syrup on the side.

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It was like having dessert for dinner. The key to a good pancake– besides a good heft and height- is that they taste good all on their own. I’m no spartan when it comes to my cakes; they’ve got to be chock full of something good, something flavorful and tasty enough so that I can eat it all on it’s own. These certainly fit that need. Chunks of sweet cherries, a sprinkling of Guittard semi-sweets and a hot pan was all I needed. That and an appetite.

Cherry Syrup
by Kate

(weights are approximate; this was totally thrown together)

1-1/2# fresh pitted cherries
1 c. water
1/2 c. brown sugar
2 T. lemon juice
Cornstarch for thickening (the amount you use will vary with the juiciness of your fruit)

Combine all ingredients in a heavy pan and cook at a simmer until fruit breaks down and releases it’s juice. Mix about 2 T. of cornstarch with 1/4 c. cold water to make a pourable liquid. Slowly pour into hot fruit, whisking constantly until thickened to your liking. Cook, stirring occasionally for about 5 minutes more, or until liquid has darkened and becomes syrupy. Remove from heat and allow to cool.

This should keep in the fridge for a week or so, if it lasts that long. Enjoy on pancakes or waffles, ice cream, yogurt, cereal…..the possibilities are endless.

10 responses to “Cherries!!”

  1. Sue says:

    Hi Kate!
    I just found your blog by doing a search for a healthy sloppy joe recipe. I can’t use it right now, because I already have some ground beef and onions cooking.

    I liked that you don’t use ads. I didn’t read your reason yet, but plan to when I get a chance. I don’t do ads, either, but it seems many bloggers do.

    I’m like you with the cherries. They are more expensive this year, but I am willing to pay what I have to for them, so far, anyway. These pancakes look yummy!

  2. Kirby! says:

    I LOVE cherries, and they are EVERYWHERE at this time of year!!! I can easily down a whole bag of them and then be like, “Wait a minute…. how did this happen????”

  3. Jamie says:

    Wow! Beautiful cherries (my favorites!) and chocolate chips in pancakes! Fabulous and they look so delicious and so much fluffier than mine! I must go back and get those tips!

  4. Yumma-yumma-yum! That would be perfect for Sat. morning breakfast.

  5. I just bought the most incredible bag of cherries ever at the Whole Foods on Excelsior, in Minneapolis, MN. Seriously. The best. Ever. Nearly a life changing experience. I have no idea how much they cost. But, they can’t be as much as the Cherimoya’s from Byerly’s I bought this winter! -Chris Ann

  6. Astrid says:

    Oh my! I envy you for those cherries! Here we have to wait a few weeks before this babies are ripe. Can’t wait tho. Love cherries!!

  7. Anne says:

    Mmmm, mmmmm! I’m sure they were perfectly delish on their own, but the cherry syrup must’ve been verrrrrrry good! And it does sound like a great dessert too.

  8. bobbi says:

    wowowoow those look wonderful:) Writing down the recipe right now!

  9. Maris says:

    How beautiful! I really wanted to buy cherries at the market the other day but they were NINE DOLLARS A POUND. When I thought of all of the other things I could buy for $9 I just couldn’t do it!! Hoping the farmer’s market has some better deals this weekend.

  10. Kristen says:

    We just finished off our first big bag of cherries for the season. These pancakes look amazing. Like you, our cherries rarely last long enough to be baked into anything!