Sunday, June 29, 2014

Sour Cherry Bliss

Our apartment building has a peach tree and a non-productive plum tree on our side of the yard, and a sour cherry tree in front. 

I love tart flavors, and have always loved cherry pie (even the kind from a can), but somehow never realized that that "cherry pie filling" flavor came from (cooked) sour cherries. 

Until now... 

Consider me totally educated in all things sour cherry, after harvesting 16 cups' worth of cherries this weekend and baking a ridiculous slab pie. 

This Smitten Kitchen recipe is a total knockout. Perfectly flaky and buttery crust, with an insanely flavorful tart cherry filling. 

Sour Cherry Slab Pie from Smitten Kitchen

Recipe note: The cherries Deb used to make the photographed recipe were either at the furthest edge of the ripeness spectrum, or else a variety that's a bit closer to sweet cherries, based on their color. I always dial back the sugar in recipes, but found myself adding at least 1/4C more to the recommended low end 3/4 C from Deb's recipe because my cherries were so tart (they came right off the stem, so they were at least ripe enough). 

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Roasted Strawberry Rhubarb Sauce

What better way to celebrate getting married and entering a new decade of life than to start blogging again? 

Strawberry season is so brief here that underripe to utterly perfect to the last mushy dregs can be witnessed in about a week and a half of farmers markets. I buy them and devour them at every stage, but sometimes you need a little extra something to coax the not-quite-ripe batch into fragrant perfection. I'll bet that roasting at 350 for twenty minutes or so with rhubarb and a little honey would even work for supermarket strawberries. Seriously, the smell is transcendent, and fixes every problem that comes with trying to make a strawberry rhubarb sauce on the stovetop. 

While this sauce's ultimate purpose in life is to make a shortcake with savory biscuits (never sweet biscuits or cake), the biscuit recipe I tried this time around was disappointing. I'm experimenting with buttermilk biscuits (after growing up on baking powder biscuits exclusively). I can conclusively say that sugar, even a very small amount, has no place in a biscuit. I suppose I'll just have to make more... 

Strawberry Rhubarb Sauce recipe from Cookies + Kate
This biscuit recipe from Smitten Kitchen
Preferred biscuit recipe from the Southern section of