As you may have noticed, fruits and berries are all early this year because of the dry, hot weather. What that means for Washington farmers is an early harvest, especially for organic sweet cherries. For us that means we need to move them out of the store….fast! For you, our customer, that means a SALE! Now, until supplies last, organic sweet cherries are $2.99 lb. Buy as much or as little as you like and freeze some for later! One pound of cherries is approximately two cups. You do want to buy cherries with their stems attached as they keep longer and are fresher.
Let’s say you love cherry pie. But let’s also say that you think you need sour pie cherries for that. Untrue! A lot of people think only the sour pie cherries are suitable for pie, however you CAN make cherry pie with sweet cherries. It might have a different flavor than sour cherry pie, but it’s still cherry pie with less added sugar. And less sugar is a good thing.
Try this recipe for Sweet Cherry Pie from the Smitten Kitchen blog, and see for yourself!
Some folks cook the cherries on the stove before assembling the pie. This recipe for Cherry Pie-in-a-Jar does exactly that. Pie-in-a-Jar makes a great gift when you have run out of ideas or are short on cash, especially if you already have frozen cherries on hand.
One other thing about cherries in general is that they can be a real pain to process for freezing. The trick to making it easier, it has been said, is to de-stem the cherries, but leave the pit in, and freeze. When you decide to use the cherries, let them defrost about halfway and the pits will just pop out. You can also freeze the cherries halfway, pit them, and then stick them in the freezer. It’s six of one, half a dozen of the other.
Here’s another way to pit cherries that looks pretty easy. All you need is a chopstick and an empty bottle.
Cherries are a lot more versatile than you might think, so load up, freeze them, and explore the possibilities!