Melanie Johnson turns this season's cherries into three mouthwatering dishes.
Deliciously juicy cherries are paired with matcha powder in this Japanese twist on a summer favourite
Melanie Johnson’s matcha and cherry mille crêpe cake with no-churn cherry ice cream
For the cherry ice cream
- 250g cherries, without stones and stalks (plus more below)
- 100g caster sugar
- 200g condensed milk
- 600ml double cream
- 15g corn flour
For the matcha crêpes
- 210g plain flour
- 25g matcha powder
- 560ml milk
- 3 tbspn maple syrup
- 2 tspn vanilla-bean paste
- Pinch of salt
For the filling
- 300ml double cream
- 300g cream cheese
- 50g icing sugar, sieved
- 1 tbspn matcha powder
- 3 tbspn icing sugar
- 250g cherries to add on top and serve alongside
To make the ice cream, simmer the cherries in a saucepan with the caster sugar until they are juicy, but still holding their shape. Drain, setting the cherries aside and reserving the liquid, which you return to the saucepan. Reduce over a high heat for a few minutes to intensify the flavour and let it become syrupy.
In a separate bowl, make a paste from a splash of cold water and the corn flour. Add to the saucepan and briefly heat again to thicken it further and then return the cherries before setting aside. Reserve a quarter of the mix in a separate bowl to use to fill the crêpes.
Use electric beaters to mix the condensed milk and double cream until stiff. Fold through the reserved cherry syrup and spoon into a loaf tin to freeze for at least four hours.
To make the crêpes, add the plain flour and matcha powder to a large bowl, followed by the milk, maple syrup, vanilla-bean paste and salt. Whisk until smooth. Fry in butter, one ladle at a time, until all the mixture is used and you have about 15 crêpes. Put them in the fridge to chill.
Beat together the double cream and cream cheese until thick and stir in the icing sugar.
To assemble the cake, take one crepe and spread over an even layer of filling using a spatula, then drizzle with the syrupy cherries. Place the next crêpe on top and repeat until you’ve used all the crêpes. Chill for an hour or until ready to serve so it cuts neatly.
To finish, sift over the icing sugar and matcha powder before topping with fresh cherries. Slice and serve with a scoop of ice-cream. This is best eaten on the day you make it
More ways with cherries
Cherry chocolate brownies
Prepare 250g cherries as in the first two paragraphs of the main recipe and chill until ready to use.
Melt 175g unsalted butter with 200g dark chocolate. In a separate bowl, mix 250g caster sugar with three eggs and a teaspoon of vanilla.
Pour in the melted chocolate and mix until even and then add 115g plain flour. Fold through the cherries and syrup and bake for 35 minutes in a moderate oven.
Chill in the tin before slicing
Cherry, prosciutto and mozzarella toasts
Toast sourdough and then drizzle with olive oil and rub with a garlic clove.
Tear off pieces of mozzarella and then arrange with the prosciutto slices, together with stoned and halved fresh cherries and some rocket.
Season and drizzle with balsamic vinegar before serving
Melanie Johnson makes the most of juicy British berries with these sweet recipes.