This cherry blog is a paid partnership with BC Tree Fruits. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Growing up in BC I knew it was finally summer when school was out and the fruits became ripe on the trees. An annual family vacation to the Okanagan was always highlighted with a cherry picking adventure. We would make an afternoon of going to the orchard, grabbing a tin bucket and filling it to the brim with fresh cherries. We would all then proceed to eat sitting at the beach until our stomachs told us “No more!”.
Our summer road trip would end with a stop at the fruit stand to buy a flat or two to take home. Beautiful dark luscious cherries start the Okanagan’s summer fruit harvest, usually around the third week in June. Late-ripening varieties carry the season well into August. BC Tree Fruits cherries are premium quality, so we are always sure to look for the leaf symbol when buying cherries!
Once we got home, my mom would then take our fresh fruit and make cherry pies, cobbler, freeze some and also add to her favourite recipes like banana bread….and yes we continued to eat them fresh because they are hard to resist.
For those asking (and I know you will) my dress is from Joanie. 🙂
BC Tree Fruits cherries are beyond tasty and I know my personal favourite is cherry pie. Now that I live alone, making a whole pie isn’t too practical, so for a fun twist, I wanted to share a recipe for cherry hand pies based on my Momma’s pie recipe that I grew up eating. These pies are so yummy and full tasty goodies…and they freeze well, too.
Now that I am trying my best to be gluten free and dairy free I have been playing around with different crust recipes. So far this recipe has been my favourite. Let me know in the comments below if you have a favourite GF and DF crust recipe!
Cherry lover tips & tricks:
- Dip cherries in ice water before eating them to make each bite crisp and cool.
- Paper clips make great cherry pitters. Unfold a paper clip and insert the end bend of the clip through the top of the cherry. Loosen the pit and pull it out.
BC Tree Fruits cherries are a summer staple and perfect for your outdoor adventures. Take them to the beach, on a hike, or enjoy by the handful with the fam jam while sitting on the deck.
Cherry Hand Pies!
- 2 1/2 Cups all purpose flour
- 1 Tsp. salt
- 1 Tsp. sugar
- 1 Cup unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
- 1/4 to 1/2 Cup ice water
- 2 Cups BC Tree Fruits cherries, pitted
- 1/4 Cup sugar
- 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp. corn starch
- In the bowl of a food processor, combine flour, salt, and sugar. Add butter, and process until the mixture resembles corn meal.
- With machine running, add ice water in a slow, steady stream. Pulse until dough holds together without being wet or sticky.
- Divide dough into two equal balls. Flatten each ball into a disc and wrap in plastic. Transfer to the refrigerator and chill at least 1 hour.
- Combine all ingredients into a small sauce pan.
- Cook over medium heat until thick. Stir frequently.
- Preheat over to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment and set aside.
- Roll out one disc of dough onto a floured surface. Cut into desired shapes which are about 2 1/2 inches or so. I made circles using a cookie cutter and squares using a knife.
- Place half of the cut shapes onto a baking sheet.
- In the center of each shape, place about 2 Tbsp of the filling. Don’t get the filling along the edge of the shape.
- Place a “top” onto each shape and crimp the edges with a fork. Cut a hole with your knife or fork in the top of each. Alternately you can use a tiny cookie cutter to make a shape in the top of each. Hearts look really cute.
- Beat the egg until frothy and then apply over top of each hand pie.
- Bake for 10 minutes and then let cool before handling.
My annual childhood trips to the Okanagan with my family were filled with beach days, bike rides, hikes, boating and making friends. Some things never change because it is still one of my favourite places to do…whether with my family or with friends. You can always count on warm weather with lots to do for those that love to stay active.
A huge thank you to Josh for all the images and coming with me on this trip!
Did you know…
- You can bake with them, grill them, juice them and eat them dried.
- BC Tree Fruits Cooperative is comprised of over 430 local grower families who produce a variety of tree fruit commodities including apples, cherries, pears, peaches, nectarines, apricots, prunes, plums and grapes.
- BC Tree Fruits cherries are so good for you. They are full of powerful antioxidants, reduce inflammation and reduce post-exercise muscle pain.
And….before I sign off…a photo of me from way back when. 🙂