My little brother is a huge fan of cherries. He loves eating fresh cherries (especially the “white” Rainier variety), and he even loves cherry-flavored foods like ice pops and soda. Heck, he even likes to drink Shirley Temples and eat the maraschino cherry on top! Me, on the other hand, well, I’m more of a chocolate kind of girl. If I had to pick a favorite fruit, I’d probably choose strawberries (kiwis are up there too).
For this month’s What’s Baking challenge, Jaida of Sweet Beginnings chose “summer fruits” for our theme. I’d already made things with strawberries and peaches recently and wanted to try something new, so I decided to make something with cherries to honor my younger brother. Plus, the generous team at OXO gave me this Cherry & Olive Pitter to try out.
I originally thought about making cobbler, but this summer has been so hot (it was 103 degrees in mid-July) that I wanted something that would be cool and refreshing and wouldn’t require me to turn on the stove or oven. Because July is National Ice Cream Month, what better way to celebrate the occasion than with a cherry chocolate chip ice cream?
I found several recipes on the internet but got turned off by the ones that made me puree the cherries and discard them after extracting the fruit. Why would you want to throw any part of the cherry away? Isn’t that one of the best parts of a cherry flavored ice cream? Anyway, I eventually ended up at Love & Olive Oil and am glad I did.
Let me tell you how fun this cherry pitter was to use! I’ve never seen one or even heard of one before, but I am now a believer! I felt like I was in middle school again because the cherry pitter is very reminiscent of those gun type of tools that are used to pierce your ears. Every time I pitted a cherry, it sounded and felt like I was giving someone an earring! I’ll be using it again when I muster up the courage to make my husband’s family’s cherry pie recipe.
Oh, and this ice cream really hit the spot. I am so glad that this didn’t require me to throw out any cherry skin or other parts of the fruit because it was fun to bite into the ice cream and get a little surprise burst of fruit. Plus, being the chocolate fan that I am, I really appreciated the bits of chopped chocolate in the ice cream too. You can never have too much chocolate, I tell you!
Happy National Ice Cream Month, and thanks again to OXO for introducing me to the cherry pitter! And of course, to my little brother – I hope you enjoy this recipe!
Cherry chocolate chip ice cream
- 1 and 1/2 cups heavy cream
- 1/2 cup almond milk I used whole milk
- 8 ounces fresh cherries pitted (you could use frozen but make sure to thaw them out and discard any liquid)
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- pinch salt
- 3 ounces dark chocolate chopped
- Combine cream, almond milk, 6 ounces of cherries, sugar, vanilla extract, almond extract, and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until cherries are finely chopped. Add remaining cherries and pulse briefly until coarsely chopped.
- Churn in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer's directions. At the very end, mix in chopped chocolate. Transfer to a freezer safe container and freeze until firm, at least 4 hours or overnight.