I visited the Farmers' Market and what did I see?
Beautiful sour cherries, that seemed to say, "Pick me!"
So gorgeous and glossy, they didn’t look real
I wondered: do they make this color in heels?
I grabbed them, paid, and stowed them away
I could hardly wait to get in my kitchen and play.
Then I found goat cheese, but what are those specks?
Fresh ground black pepper and lemon zest flecks!
From one of the smiling vendors all lined in a row,
I bought a cute lemon sour cream pound cake, wrapped with a bow.
When I got home and looked at my loot;
There were berries and cherries and veggies that root.
A huge bunch of carrots, bright orange and fun;
I brought them home to share with my bun.
There were squash and herbs that smelled like perfume
What on earth would I make or do?
I took a moment to sit and smell the flowers
With so many ideas I could sit there for hours.
All of my thoughts went back to those gems,
Those bright red cherries, with their long slender stems.
A cherry shortcake is what I decided,
Where cherry compote, pound cake and goat cheese collided.
A twist on a classic and I liked it a lot;
Sour cherry shortcake, goat cheese cream on top.
The goat cheese cream for this shortcake was really experimental. In the electric mixer, I added sour cream, confectioner’s sugar and butter to the black pepper and lemon goat cheese. My goal was to sweeten the goat cheese without losing its great flavor, while also creating a more stable, whipped consistency. In the end, the cream tasted good but could have been a little thicker.
Now that I think about it, perhaps the goat cheese didn’t need to be sweetened at all. If I had more, it would probably have tasted just as good, if not better, to just whip it smooth and lay it on thick between the layers of pound cake and sour cherry compote.
I’ve provided the recipe for the compote. With a little bit of Grand Manier added at the end, it is delicious. If not used in shortcake, it can also be enjoyed over ice cream or yogurt, and even on savory chicken and pork dishes.
Sour Cherry Compote:
Yield: 1 cup
- 1 pint sour cherries, stemmed and cleaned over a bowl to catch any juice
- ½ cup sugar
- ½ cup water
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon Grand Manier or other orange-flavored liquor
• In a medium sauce pot, mix sugar and cornstarch together, then add water and mix until smooth. Add cherries and any juice to the pot and bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Boil for 2 minutes then drain cherries in a sieve set over a bowl and set aside.
• Return the juice to the pan and simmer for about 5 minutes until thickened. At the last minute, stir in the Grand Manier. Pour syrup over the cherries and cool.