Fruits of Summer

Sour Cherries fresh from The Cherrful Cherry at the Greenmarket in Union Square NYC

Berries and Cherries and Stone Fruit…. Oh My! Yes, one of the many rewards to braving the summer heat is sinking your teeth into one of these delectable fruit gems…. bare and simple; baked into a treat; or incorporated into a delicious sauce of both savory and sweet dimensions. Two of my favorites…. the sour cherry and the blueberry.

Blueberries from Hillview Farm in Meyersville, NJ. Just up the road from me!

Sour Cherry Turnover

Sour cherry season is short lived. Very short. Mid June through early July, and many of the farm markets sell out of their stash (at least the ones that I frequent!) To my friends out there that laugh at me for trapsing into the city on a random early weekday morning to secure my lot of sour cherries… take one bite of this tart or turnover and see why I am so passionate about it! (Oh and forgive the lame shot of the sour cherry tart as that was me taking the picture at 10pm on Sunday night on my cell phone. Manish wanted make sure I mentioned that! :)

Blueberry Pancakes with Blueberry Ginger Preserves (here melted into a sauce)

I went blueberry picking with some friends and my daughters over at the Hillview Farm here in Meyersville. It was the perfect morning, weather wise, and most of the blueberries were ripe, juice, and ready to be plucked. We left with 7 lbs of blueberries, all deliciously plump and sweet. Three days of blueberry pancakes, muffins, and jam, and we still wanted more!

Sour Cherry and Almond Tart

3/4 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons cold butter, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
3 tablespoons ice water
1 lb sour cherries, pitted
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2/3 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1/4 cup raw almonds
1 tablespoon sugar

Combine first 3 ingredients together in a medium bowl. Mix in butter pieces with fingertips until incorporated (it’s ok if you see clumps of butter.) Stir in ice water with a fork until just combined (dough will be shaggy.) Empty contents of bowl (in other words, the shaggy dough) into a large piece of plastic wrap. Form the dough into a disc and wrap tightly. Refrigerate for 1 hour.

Flour a piece of parchment paper and place dough disc on top. Place another piece of floured parchemnet on top (flour part touching the dough.) Roll dough out into a 12 to 13 inch diameter circle. Transfer dough carefully to a 10 inch tart pan. I found this pate brisee very delicate, so if it breaks, no worries – just “seal” any holes with the scraps of dough. Form dough into tart pan and up the sides. “Roll off” any excess dough with the rolling pin. Refrigerate for one hour.

Meanwhile, in a bowl, combine the sour cherries, sugar, and almond extract in a bowl. Grind the almonds and 1 tablespoon sugar in a food processor until fine.

Sprinkle almond mixture into the tart shell, and pour the cherry mixture on top. Bake in a 400 degree oven for 45 minutes to an hour. Serve warm.

Sour Cherry Almond Tart

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