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Cherries on Top

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by Susie Middleton
from Fine Cooking #105, p. 78-85

It was a warm June evening on my first trip to Tuscany many years ago, and I was eating dinner at an outdoor trattoria. The waiter brought course after course of delicious food, and when it was finally time for dessert, I told him I’d skip it. He looked at me like I was from Mars. A few minutes later, he brought over a huge bowl of cherries swimming in cold water and ice. I grabbed one of the darkest ones and popped it in my mouth. Then I ate the whole bowl.

There’s nothing quite like summer cherries. Right now, they’re plump, juicy, and bursting with sweetness, so get these beauties while you can—their season is fleeting. Once you’ve eaten your fill out of hand, hit the kitchen. These recipes will guide you through everything cherry, from appetizers and drinks (margaritas, anyone?) to main courses and desserts. Taste one, and you’ll want to try them all.

Fresh Cherry Margarita Pepper-Crusted Duck Breasts with Cherry-Port Sauce
Fresh Cherry Margarita   Pepper-Crusted Duck Breasts with Cherry-Port Sauce
Cherry and Onion Stuffed Pork Tenderloin Fresh Cherry Relish and Goat Cheese Crostini
Cherry and Onion Stuffed Pork Tenderloin   Fresh Cherry Relish and Goat Cheese Crostini
Cherry-Almond Clafoutis Grilled Polenta Cake with Cherry-Cassis Sauce
Cherry-Almond Clafoutis   Grilled Polenta Cake with Cherry-Cassis Sauce

Photos: Scott Phillips

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