Sunday, July 18, 2010

Sour cherries: going, going...


Serves 4 to 6


1 quart fresh sour cherries
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons corn starch
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
4 tablespoons butter, melted
1/4 cup chopped almonds
8 sheets phyllo dough
1 ounce 70% dark chocolate
Powdered sugar for dusting


Remove the pits and stems from the cherries. Rinse.

Combine the cherries, sugar, cornstarch, and almond extract in a saucepan, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Simmer for 5 minutes, stirring intermittently. Set aside to cool.

Place 2 phyllo sheets on a cutting board and allow them to dry out for 15 minutes. Crumble. Mix into cooled filling.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Cover a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Place 6 sheets of phyllo on a cutting board. Brush one sheet with butter and place it on the cookie sheet. Repeat with remaining sheets, layering the buttered sheets, one over the other on the cookie sheet.

Spoon the cherry filling on stacked sheets vertically, leaving a 3-inch border from the edge. Sprinkle with almonds. Turn the top edge and bottom edge of phyllo sheets down to cover the filling. Roll the phyllo widthwise. Place the rolled phyllo on the cookie sheet, seam side down.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until the phyllo turns golden.

Cool on a wire rack for 30 minutes.

Melt the dark chocolate and drizzle it over the strudel. Dust with powdered sugar.

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