Wednesday, June 3, 2009

more luck

Cherries. Black. Ripe. Copious. Mmmm.

The beauty of cherries is their fleeting being. It gives their flesh a particular sweetness. The season when you can get cherries that are worth eating is perhaps only three weeks long. This scarce season when spring is fully ripe and summer just awaits it’s official installation is right now.. they seem to arrive at the same moment when you fully integrate the idea that the dark and cold have truly receded again. Cherries are the first real taste of the light and heat of summer. We just picked our fill. Our hands are stained with the blood of another fallen winter.

It was a group affair, my vigneron said we could have at one of his cherry trees. It sits right on the pretty edge of one of the vignes. He had had his fill and being pressed from all sides he just doesn’t have time to go and pick them all. And even if he did, then what. Without his country village mom alive any more to process them, picking them is just wasted work. He said we could take what we wanted. A little prime de panier for his ouvrier.

Cherries - everyone loves them, or at least the concept of them. Even so it was with difficulty that we got the five kids simultaneously rallied for the deluxe chance I was trying to convince this was. In the end we just forced them to go on grounds of fresh air and family time. We arrived in two cars, baskets and bags in tow. From a distance, across the vines, the tree looks pocked with dark red blight.

We swarmed on the tree like ants on sugar. Everyone exclaiming loudly at the quantity of perfectly ripe shiny blood red cherries hanging before us. We all are stunned to explicative. An hour later we have our fill. It’s at least 50 pounds. And we only took the best ones, the tree had five times more still hanging on it when we left. Ah richesse. It’s hard to leave it - “just one more, it’s perfect”.

Then the satisfaction of walking up the street with our baskets overflowing with black cherries. The public casts envious eyes as we mount to the house leaving a scattered trail of rolling cherries from the overloaded baskets. Like a stringer of fresh trout, others see your luck and it is magnified. Ha, the work commences.

It goes on all weekend and monday too. We have right at de-pitting them. Cut squeeze catch drop and again. Everything dripping blood red. Big pots of stewing cherries slowly bubbling on the stove all weekend. The table covered with cherries in all form. We eat them with anything, we all agree they go best with white colored foods. Cheese, yogurt, ice cream, bananas, cream, vodka, pancakes, but the chocolate was good too.

Now all the kids have gone away to their respective parents and the cupboard is stacked with jars of all sizes of black jams and syrups that will bring us all back to the tree of plenty until at least the summer heat goes away.


  1. good cherries for a good family
    what a good fun too

  2. Our cherries are the best ones ;)
    We're going to have cherry JAM for a year now!
    How come I didn't see the cherries with chocolate ?

  3. And I see you eventually convinced them of the deluxe chance it was! If only in retrospect but that view is a pretty darn good one.