Cherries brighten up a fruit salad, and can be used to top tarts, or as a filling for cakes and pancakes. A favourite pudding in the Field Kitchen is cherry clafoutis.
Cherries are best kept in the fridge, but bring them to room temperature before eating for flavour.
These come straight from the farm, so they will need a wash. Wait until you’re ready to eat them first, though – otherwise the moisture will encourage the fruit to spoil.
About the grower
The Pardoes have been growing fruit in Herefordshire for four generations. They went organic in the early 1980s, determined to make good organic produce accessible and affordable for everyone. It wasn’t always easy; Joe’s dad, Ian, used to load up his van and offer their fruit cheaply round the housing estates of the North. Unfortunately, he found that people tended be put off if he mentioned that it was organically grown – the fruit shifted much faster if he implied that it was stolen!
Back in the day, their orchards only grew apples. Now they have acres of cherries, pears, and plums too. All their fresh organic fruit is grown and harvested by hand, mostly by Joe and his uncle Bill (with a few extra helping hands during the busiest harvest).
A bit of veg nerdery
Cherries are widely grown in Turkey and are thought to have been introduced to England by order of Henry VIII, who had tasted them in Flanders. Many flowering cherry cultivars, or ornamental cherries, have additional petals rather than stamens and pistils, so they are sterile and do not bear fruit.