I’m sorry BC cherry growers, you can keep your bings. I was a newbie to Evans cherries last year when Mary Ellen and Andreas from Green Eggs & Ham mentioned we could help ourselves to their trees after volunteering to do some weeding and carrot harvesting, as they were too slammed with other harvest work to bother getting to them. They had lots. I picked about 20 lbs, and there was many, many, many times that there. Not knowing what to do with them, and having a fair fall load of work myself, I tossed them in a stockpot and cooked them down, strained them, and ended up with a shockingly tasty syrup. Fantastic in sparkling water, or to replace purchased juice for my kids. This year’s hookup is courtesy of Maki, who lives down the street and offered. I’ll be planting my own tree in the spring.
If you’ve tried Evans cherries from the tree and thought ‘ick, holy sour and no flavor‘, I don’t blame you, but implore you to simply cook them with a little sugar to balance the acidity. The flavor that comes from these things is intense, unique, and beautiful. All the cherry awesomeness you could ask for, and more. I’m not sure I’ve encountered a single fruit that intensifies its flavor so much through cooking – you have to try it. I can’t wait for the cherry pie.
If you’re not sure where to get hooked up, Operation Fruit Rescue Edmonton‘s volunteers will have a crack at some rescued fruit in the coming week or two. Some U-Picks around the province have them too. Or plant your own tree in the spring, like me.