Seasonal Vegan recipes to celebrate the European Picota Cherry Season.
Nourishing Amy and Gina Burgess have celebrated the start of the European Picota cherry season with recipes for delicious vegan snacks that showcase the naturally stalkless fruit.
Naturally sweet and packed with goodness, European Picota cherries have a story as unique as their taste. For generations, these crunchy cherries have been produced at family run-farms carved out of the high mountainsides of the picturesque Jerte Valley.
Only once optimum ripeness is reached is the fruit hand-picked before being carefully transported in baskets to a state-of-the-art packhouse.
As well as its status as Europe’s only naturally stalkless cherry, the Picota variety boasts a uniquely fleshy and crunchy texture as well as a longer shelf life than other cherry varieties. It's deep red colour is indicative of the rich flavours that lie within.
Recipes below by Nourishing Amy and Gina Burgess
Picota Cherry Bakewell Cookie Cups
“If you LOVE cherry Bakewell and cookie dough, then these are the PERFECT little snack for you. They are so delicious, naturally vegan, gluten-free and made with good-for-you ingredients”– Nourishing Amy
Time: 20 minutes plus 1-2 hours chilling
For the Cherry Chia Jam:
• 200g pitted Picota Cherries (approx. 250g whole cherries)
• 2 tbsp maple syrup
• 2 tbsp white chia seeds
For the cookie dough cups:
• 50g oat flour
• 60g ground almonds
• 30g vegan vanilla protein powder
• 3 tbsp melted coconut oil
• 3 tbsp runny, smooth almond butter
• 2 tbsp maple syrup
• Pinch of salt
• 40g dark chocolate chips
For the Frangipane:
• 2 tbsp (30g) runny, smooth almond butter
• 1 ½ tbsp maple syrup
• 1 tbsp melted coconut oil
• 30g ground almonds
• 6 tsp whipped coconut cream or thick coconut yoghurt
• 6 Picota Cherries, whole
• 1 tbsp flaked almonds, crushed
• Start by making the jam: add the pitted cherries to a saucepan along with the maple syrup and bring to a boil. Allow to summer and bubble over a high heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally and mashing the cherries with the spoon, until juicy and sticky. Stir in the chia seeds, remove from the heat and allow to cool down. Once cool, blend up to a smoother jam. Store in the fridge for 1 week in a sealed jar, until needed.
• Line 8 muffin holes in a tray with paper cases.
• For the cookie dough: stir together the oat flour, ground almonds, protein powder, coconut oil, almond butter, syrup and salt to a sticky mix. Now fold in the chocolate chips and divide into 8 equal pieces (about 40g each). Press each one into a muffin case and make a cup shape. I like to press a shot glass (or similar) into the centre of each cookie dough ball to do this. Chill in the fridge while you make the fillings.
• For the frangipane: stir together the ingredients until sticky. Remove the cups from the fridge and spoon in some of the frangipane and top with some of the cherry jam (you will have extras). Allow to rest in the fridge for1 bour, until they have firmed up.
• To serve: remove from the fridge and pipe on some coconut yoghurt and top with a Picota Cherry and some flaked almonds.
• Eat straight away or keep in a sealed container in the fridge for 1 week or in the freezer for 1 month. Allow to defrost before eating.
Picota Cherry Yogurt Clusters
“These are Divine! If you like cherry bakewell and Froyo, you’ll love these! Picota cherries work so well in this recipe with their unique sweet taste and crunch!” – Gina Burgess
• 200g Picota cherries (unpitted)
• 150g dairy free yoghurt - use a creamy one
• 1 tsp almond extract
• 1 tsp maple syrup (or sweetener of choice) optional
• 300g vegan dark chocolate (or chocolate of choice)
• 1 tbsp coconut oil
• Flaky salt, for topping (optional)
• Pit the cherries and chop into small pieces.
• In a medium bowl, mix together the yoghurt, almond extract and maple syrup. Then stir in the chopped cherries.
• Line a tray or flat plate (that will fit in your freezer) with a piece of baking paper and add spoonful’s of the mixture. Place this in the freezer for 45 mins - 1 hour until solid.
• Melt the chocolate with the coconut oil (the coconut oil gets it runnier so it’s easier to coat).
• Drop each yoghurt cluster into the chocolate and coat. Place back onto the baking paper and sprinkle a tiny bit of flaky salt. Leave to set for a few minutes.
• I prefer to keep them in the freezer and when I fancy one, I’ll let it thaw for a few minutes, this way the texture is a bit like froyo.
For more information on European Picota Cherrys, visit pickapicotafromeu.com
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