I had been on the hunt for Rainier cherries ever since Ramona reported buying them the weekend I was out of town. I hadn’t realized they were grown on this coast. I finally spotted some at the West End market last Sunday and snatched them up — only to discover another farmer had them cheaper. Oh well, they were worth it. I love the slight tartness and sweet aroma. Which, incidentally, pairs wonderfully with gin.
Other local highlights this week included corn and peaches appearing at our Alexandria markets (Del Ray and West End), flavorful yellow cherry tomatoes, and sweet onions in our CSA bag.
We had cherries twice Sunday, first, brunch of challah French toast with yogurt, honey and Rainier cherries:
And for dinner, grilled pork chops with Rainier cherry glaze and grilled corn-on-the-cob:
Recipe: Sweet Cherry Glaze
- 2 c. slightly tart cherries, Rainier or Queen Anne’s are ideal, halved and pitted
- 2 T honey
- 2 T red wine vinegar
- 1 t corn starch
- 1 t water
Instructions: In small saucepan, combine all ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes. Dissolve corn starch in water. Gently smash cherries with back of spoon to release juices, stir in corn starch mixture and cook 1 minute more. Serve warm over pork chops, chicken or fish.
In tribute to the beginning of peach season, I bought Dogfish Head‘s Festina Peche (DE, 117 mi.), a great summery brew released every year on June 1.
Another local treat was the rich and creamy, organic Moorenko‘s Creme Fraiche ice cream, made in McLean, VA (15 mi.), and sold at local Whole Foods.
- Basil, scapes, lettuce, sweet onions – Potomac Vegetable Farms CSA, VA, 23mi.
- Rainier cherries – Westmoreland Berry Farm, VA, 71mi.
- Yogurt, Pequea Valley Farms, PA, 132mi.
- Honey, Toigo Orchards, PA, 114mi.
- Onions, cherry tomatoes – J&W Valley View Farm, VA, 84mi
- Pork chops – Fauquier County, VA, 67mi. (via Let’s Meat on the Avenue)