No joke, peeps, I had never baked with sour cherries before making this sour cherries with marzipan crumble. Nor had I ever even purchased sour cherries. My mistake, is all I’ll say.They are the tart, tiny, slightly squishy, and lighter hued cousin of the sweet cherry. They are super easy to de-pit, due to their above mentioned squishiness, and I’ve read they keep their shape better after baking than their sweet brethren. And, if experience serves, that seems about right.
They certainly bake up with a more fluorescent red than any cherry I’ve ever baked with, and their flavor is incomparable: tart and bright and almost acidic — a friend described the baked cherries in this crisp as the best Jolly Rancher she’d ever tasted. And that’s a compliment in my book. Finally, if you can no longer find sour cherries, sweet ones would be lovely here. You can just go ahead and sub them cup for cup. This recipe is super easy and super forgiving.
Sour Cherries with Marzipan Crumble
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 4 oz almond paste cut into small cubes
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1 ⁄4 cup unsalted butter chilled
For the Sour Cherries
- 2 pounds of sour cherries pitted
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon table salt
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/3 cup cornstarch
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
For the crumble
- In a small bowl combine the flour, almond paste, and granulated sugar with your fingers until coarse crumbs form. Cut the butter into small cubes, add to the bowl, and continue to combine with your fingers until a small bit of dough stays together when you squeeze it together with your fingers. Cover with plastic wrap, and freeze until ready to use.
For the Sour cherries
- In a large bowl, combine the cherries, sugar, salt, lemon juice, corn starch and extract. Stir with a wooden spoon until combined. Transfer to a 2 quart baking dish, and cover with the crumble, breaking it into bits if necessary to cover all the cherries.
- Place in the oven and bake for 35 to 40 minutes until the topping is nicely browned and filling is bubbling. Let cool before serving, about 20-30 minutes, unless you are team runny-fruit, and then have at it whenever you so desire. Serve with a dribble of heavy cream (my preference) or vanilla ice cream.