baking

Cherry, cherry, where you goin’ to?

If you’ve been following my crafty exploits for a while, you’ll know that every summer the cherry tree in the yard produces far more cherries than I care to deal with. To top it off, they’re sour cherries so they don’t make a great snacking fruit. I’ve made jam and cherry crisp in the past, and tried throwing them into muffins with great success, but surely there had to be something else to do with them.

As it turned out, I had a pack of ladyfingers in the pantry from a month or two ago when I had visions of making this icebox cake during strawberry season. It didn’t happen, for a few different reasons, and I knew I wasn’t just going to open the package and eat them like cookies. Would the recipe work with cherries instead of strawberries?

I managed to make cherry picking a bit less arduous this year by grabbing a bowl and picking for as long as it took to fill it. This was somewhere in the 15-20 minute range; definitely doable.

I have problems with recipes that call for fruit (or what-have-you) to be chopped. I’m meticulous rather than speedy…some of my helpers are the opposite.

I followed the recipe pretty much exactly. It’s a lot harder (skipping right along to about halfway through the recipe) adding cherries to the whipped cream mixture without any of the juices, since they tend to be juicier than strawberries are. I tried, though, and I’m not entirely dissatisfied with the pretty pink colour the whipped cream took on.

If you don’t count the time taken for cleaning and chopping the fruit, this recipe actually comes together really fast. And fun fact: apparently my pan flares a bit toward the top, because I was able to fit extra ladyfingers on the second layer.

The last couple of times I’ve made this recipe (with strawberries), it’s been hot as all get-out and I haven’t felt like turning on the oven to make the crumbly topping…but I got an early jump on it and was able to not heat up the house too badly. This is after I crumbled it up; pre-crumbling, it looks a little…gross. So no before picture, sorry.

Et voilà!

I love the dark pops of colour the cherries offer! It looks like a more sophisticated version of the original strawberry take. But…how does it look? How does it taste?

It cut so cleanly, and lifted out of the (ungreased) pan with zero difficulty. As summer desserts go, this is a good one! It’s light and goes down really easy, and because I used the crispy ladyfingers rather than the soft ones, they retained some of their original texture and contrasted nicely with the whipped cream and fruit (and crunchy topping). It’s not too sweet, either, thanks to the sour cherries. I love that I’ve got something I can use them in now, besides jam and more jam. 😉

Thanks for looking! 🙂

P.S. What inspired my post title? Click here!