Two questions ....
1. Do you have fresh cherry recipes that are not the usual pie, crisp, clafoutis, jams or brandied?
2. Are some varieties of cherries better for specific recipes?
Let me start with the second. I do two things and two things only with fresh cherries ... eat them and brandy them so I can eat the brandied cherries in December.
So I know my favorite eating variety ... Bing, Brooke and Ranier
As for brandied cherries ... crisp, red cherries like Bings work best. White cherries like Ranier can develop unattractive brown spots. Softer cherries like early Garnet just are too mushy. Sour cherries can work but you have to add a whole lot of sugar.
Other than that I don't use cherries to cook ... HOWEVER
I was reading this Chow Pick about Burlat cherries.
Now I was sitting there rolling my eyes reading it (not easy) because Burlat are one of my least favorite cherries. Then I read the last line ....
"here in the test kitchen we’ve been using them in everything from pies to pork chops, and couldn’t be happier"
Hmmm ... maybe like different apple varietes ... different cherries are better in different recipes.
So I Googled ... and the brave new world of cherry recipes opened up to me ... my horizens were broadened.
Northwest Cherries Online has some of the best and most creative recipes I've found.
Some great recipes I'm going to try from that link ..
- Blushing Turkey and Goat Cheese Sandwiches http://www.nwcherries.com/?q=node/250
- Fresh Cherry Picnic Salad (with ginger & snap peas) http://www.nwcherries.com/?q=node/133
- Cherry Fennel Salad Dressing http://www.nwcherries.com/?q=node/249
- Cherry and Hazelnut Salad with Gorgonzola http://www.nwcherries.com/?q=node/173
- Cherry Bruschetta http://www.nwcherries.com/?q=node/274
- Cherry burgers with hot cherry orange relish http://www.nwcherries.com/?q=node/267
- Black Cherry-Yam Casserole http://www.nwcherries.com/?q=node/147
- Grilled cinnamon cherries http://www.nwcherries.com/?q=node/290
- Cherry Martini with ladyfingers http://www.nwcherries.com/?q=node/130
- Grilled Peaches with Fresh Cherry Sauce http://www.nwcherries.com/?q=node/145
There's lots more but those are the ones I can realistically handle with my limited cooking skills.
Last year in a Chowhound cherry topic a poster called Kate mentioned the grilled bacon-wrapped cherries. Further down in that thread is a recipe for Sautéed Balsamic Cherries.
This site has the ususal cherry recipes ... but this cherry smoothie sure looks purty ... must make tommorrow
So we are mid-cherry season in California ... what are different ideas for using fresh cherries?