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The two types of cherries are sweet and tart. Tart, or sour, cherries are used fresh, canned or dried to make many cherry desserts. Sweet cherries don't cook well as they tend to lose their flavor when heated. They are good for eating fresh or for using in cold desserts such as in ice cream. Cherry cheesecake, cherry cake, Cherries Jubilee, cherry cobbler and cherry pie are some popular desserts made with cherries.
Cherry Pie is one of the most well-known cherry desserts. Cherry pies are usually double crust pies and the top crust may be a lattice crust. Lattice crusts have long strips of dough spaced across the top of the fruit. The dough strips overlap and under lap to create a woven look. Fresh cherries are traditionally used to make a cherry pie, but canned pie filling is also often used.
Fresh cherries can be baked into a Cherry Cobbler or combined with other fruits to make a Fruit Cobbler. This is one of the desserts made with cherries in which the fruit is usually cooked before being baked. The cherries are heated with sugar and cornstarch in a pan on the stove first and then placed into a baking dish. Spoonfuls of soft dough are placed on top of the fruit before baking. Cherry Cobbler is served warm with ice cream or whipped cream.
Cherries Jubilee is one of the fanciest desserts made with cherries, yet it's also quite simple. You can even use canned cherries since cherry juice is needed to thicken with cornstarch to make the thick sauce. A liqueur such as Cognac is added to the cherries and lit with a match. Cherries Jubilee is served flambeed, or flaming, and the fiery cherries are served over ice cream. Chef Auguste Escoffier is credited with inventing Cherries Jubilee when he served it at a Jubilee celebration for Queen Victoria.
Cherry cake, cherry bread and cherry cheesecake are some other popular desserts made with cherries. Cherry cake can be made in all sorts of variations and many of them are fast recipes made with canned cherry pie filling. A streusel cherry cake has a cake layer covered in cherries and topped with a streusel crumb mixture of brown sugar, butter and oats. Cherry bread is similar to banana bread in that it's made in a loaf pan and usually has nuts added. Cherry cheesecake is made in a similar way to strawberry cheesecake and fresh, frozen or canned cherries may be used.
@Mor - You should count yourself lucky! I read recently that there was actually a US president who managed to kill himself from eating too many cherries (and drinking a bunch of milk). They actually went over his records with modern scientific knowledge, sure that couldn't be the cause of death... but it was!
I like fresh cherries as well, but I have to say that nothing, absolutely nothing, can beat a cherry cobbler. With a little bit of vanilla ice-cream, I just can't think of anything better.
You have to make it yourself, of course, but I reckon it's all right to use tinned cherries for the filling if you have to, so it's really not that difficult.
And so worth the effort. It makes my mouth water just to think about it.
@pastanaga - Although I do like that kind of sweet, personally I think that nothing can possibly beat a bunch of really nice, fresh cherries.
In fact, they are so nice, when I was a kid I ate so many that I threw up and spent years feeling nauseated at the thought of them!
Eventually I was able to eat them again, but it seems like I wasted so much time, and so many chances to eat them, particularly since my grandfather had some cherry trees in his backyard.
A couple of them were sour cherries as well. My mother always said sour ones were used in desserts because there were never enough sweet ones left to cook!
My absolute favorite dessert made with cherries might not really be considered a dessert at all, but something you have as a little treat now and then. Liquor filled chocolate cherries. They are absolutely divine, especially if you make sure you get ones with real whole cherries, rather than those that use raisins in the place of cherries and hope you won't notice.
If you really want to be sure you are getting the good stuff, with high quality chocolate and real cherries, you can try making them at home.
In order to get the liquid in the middle though, it actually takes about a week for them to set properly, so I usually just buy a case to eat while I'm waiting! Otherwise I'm not sure I can restrain myself.
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