Summer. The time when food revels in simplicity, just as nature intended, more so than any other time of year. I wait months for the first bite of this, and the first slice of that. And the anticipation and satisfaction is soon followed by fear of the last. Sliced tomatoes with salt and pepper suddenly appear at every meal. You covet a tray of slim and dainty zucchini, the perfect size and flavor, before it becomes overgrown. And then gorge yourself on the tiniest, but sweetest strawberries as you drive home from the pick-your-own farm.
When food is at it’s peak, it doesn’t need much else to shine, if anything. For this reason I’ve never been awed by menu descriptions a mile long, or each spoon of a 10 course tasting menu having so many components you can’t even decipher what’s what. And this whole gastrofusion craze, I’m not into it.
Just give me a heavenly plate of cherries and cream, and I’ll be happy for days.
My mom was the first one who taught me that fruit and cream are one of life’s simplest pleasures. She’d wait for the Georgia peaches to arrive every summer, stone fruit being tough to grow in our northern climate. As soon as they had ripened on the counter, she’d chill them in the refrigerator. And then I’d stand next to her on the stepstool as she slice the peaches and let them swim in sweet cream. A bowl for her, a bowl for me, our bedtime snack.
I wait for cherries in the same way, knowing they’re here for about 3 short weeks and after that, they’re gone. And because they’re quite expensive, I want to taste every component that makes them so delicious, with a few ingredients that merely compliment rather than compete.
Although the name of the recipe is a bit lengthy, it’s truly as simple as it gets. Vanilla bean scraped into grassfed heavy cream that gets poured over sweet, firm cherries (I used both Rainier and Dark), and sprinkled with bee pollen to finish. (I get mine at the coop, and I love the subtle flavor, texture, and color it adds. Plus it has a myriad of health benefits.)
This plate… it reminds me of an ice cream sundae topped with fresh fruit, slowly melting its way into optimal flavor. And that is summer heaven.
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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Udi’s Gluten Free. The opinions and text are all mine.
- ¾ teaspoon vanilla bean seeds, scraped from half a vanilla pod
- ⅓ cup grassfed heavy cream
- 1 cup of organic cherries, pitted
- bee pollen for sprinkling
- Whisk the vanilla bean seeds into the cream, and press around with a fork to make sure the seeds are dispersed throughout. Let sit for 10 minutes, or longer to let the seeds steep in the cream.
- Then cut some of the pitted cherries in half, leave some whole if plating and you want to look pretty. Divide between two plates (or you can put all on one if you are serving guests). Pour cream over the top, at least 2 tablespoons per plate. Sprinkle with a generous amount of bee pollen. Enjoy.