Way back in June we decided to pick our cherries. We couldn't find an answer as to when sour cherries are ready to pick and it's not like they taste sweet when they're ripe! We figured when the birds started going for them, that was good enough for us.
We picked only the darkest, reddest, squishiest ones each day and after a couple weeks we'd picked over 10 pounds of cherries! (I don't have the exact number because the sheet I wrote it on has gone missing...somewhere in the mess around here.)
We froze most of the cherries and dried some too. All the cherries got pitted first. It was a messy job, with cherry juice spattered all over the kitchen. This is a very organic tree of course, so some of the cherries were bad and several had little buggies inside. All the bad ones, and the bugs, were set aside for the chickens.
After one huge processing day (probably 4 or 5 pounds of cherries) we had a sizeable bowl to feed to the chickens. They love anything squishy and soft like this to eat. We put the bowl in the coop and they went bonkers, gulping down as many cherries and buggies as they could. It looked like someone had been killed later on, with red cherry juice spattered all over the place! They are not very clean eaters.
Jeremy has been bugging me since then to make a cherry pie. It's his favorite, and I'll confess I've had very few pieces of cherry pie in my life. I just prefer other kinds of pie. But yesterday we were invited to dinner at J & B's house (fellow chicken-lovers just a few houses away) so I decided it was a perfect opportunity to make pie.
I usually get very upset when I make crust, but even so I decided to try a lattice-top because a cherry pie just has to have a lattice top! Amazingly, everything worked out beautifully.
Before the oven...
And the final results!
The pie, served with vanilla ice cream of course, was quite a success.