Fresh Cherry Crisp for a Hot Summer Night

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The first thing that caught my eye at the farmer’s market this weekend was the table covered in plump, bright cherries. Boy do I love summer in all its fresh fruit glory. Mmmm, perfectly sweet and juicy; I ate so many. I’m surprised I had enough left to use for baking.

Aside from cookies, I’m pretty much a newbie baker. I’m a relatively novice cherry lover too, so I’d never baked with cherries on my own before. Cherry pie is my favorite, but I wasn’t feeling that ambitious on a hot summer night with no AC, so I asked my boyfriend’s mom for my second favorite (and much simpler) cherry recipe instead, cherry crisp. YUM. Writing those words makes my mouth water.

If I’m being honest, I wasn’t as successful as I’d hoped to be in this baking endeavor. The cherry crisp was still delicious, no doubt about that, but it was a little less, well, crisp than I remembered. I would love to act like I nailed it, but part of this space for me is about reality and discovery. It doesn’t always go right. Sometimes, your cherry crisp ends up mushier than you’d hoped, and you forget to buy vanilla ice cream. But in the end, you still end up with a tasty first attempt that you’ll try to improve the next time. And then you buy some vanilla ice cream for the leftovers, and all is right with the world. Thank god for ice cream.

Cherry season is here and doesn’t last long, at least here in New York, so I still wanted to share the recipe while there’s time to try it. I know this stuff is phenomenal when you get it right!

Ingredients

For topping
  • 1 ⅓ cups brown sugar
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup oats
  • 1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
  • ⅔ cup butter, softened
For cherry filling
  • 8 cups, sour cherries, pitted and drained
  • 1 ⅓ cups sugar
  • ⅓ cup flour

Directions

Mix together topping ingredients and set aside. Mix sugar and flour; add cherries. Place cherry mixture in greased 9×13 pan. Sprinkle topping over cherries. Bake at 375℉ for 30-35 minutes. Serve warm or cool with whipped cream or ice cream.

Note: Removing the cherry pits without a pitter can be a huge pain. I looked up some tips (these were great!) and found a tried and true method using the narrow end of a wooden spoon. It was super easy and quick once I found my way!

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