Eugene | Rain NW | Scott Pisani
3 cups pitted Oregon cherries
2 cups pinot noir
½ cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons grated ginger
½ cup red wine vinegar
1 cup minced shallots
1 cinnamon stick
1 star anise pod
2 cardamom pods
Using cheesecloth, tie cinnamon, anise, cardamom and cloves into a sachet with butcher’s twine. Toss everything into a small pot and bring to a slow simmer. Continue cooking as the liquid reduces and the flavors concentrate. When most of the liquid is gone and the mixture is thickened, it is done. Remove sachet. Refrigerate until needed.
Portland | Broder | Daniel Oseas
5 cups fresh Bing cherries, pits removed
1/3 cup dried tart cherries, Montmorency variety recommended
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup honey
1/3 cup white wine
1/2 bunch tarragon, chopped (optional)
Mix honey and wine in a sauce pan, add dried cherries and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and allow the dried cherries to steep for at least 30 minutes.
Add fresh cherries, sugar and water to the dried cherry mixture. Bring to a boil for 5 to 10 minutes. Taste the liquid and add more sugar if your cherries require it. Transfer to a Vitamix or other good blender and blend on high until completely smooth. Pass the mixture through a fine mesh strainer if you want a more refined final product, or leave it thick and rustic. Put the soup into the refrigerator until it is completely cold. Add finely chopped tarragon if you like. Serve with a nice dollop of unsweetened yogurt and a few roughly chopped fresh cherries.
Portland | Smokehouse Tavern | B.J. Smith
1 quart sour cherries, pitted
½ cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon orange zest
Pinch kosher salt
Juice of one orange
2 tablespoons honey (smoked is preferred)
2 cups cherry chips
Salt and pepper to taste
1 pint livers (soaked overnight in milk)
½ cup cream
1 tablespoon thyme
3 tablespoons sherry
2 ounces dried cherries
1 tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoon butter
1 shallot, sliced
Smoke the cherries for about 30 minutes at 180 degrees, using a pan set up for a smoker. Combine the cherries, sugar, orange juice and salt. Cook for about 30 minutes. Add the honey and zest. Let sit in refrigerator overnight.
For chicken liver mousse:
Sauté the shallots on high heat, add chicken livers and season with salt and pepper. When they are seared on both sides, deglaze with sherry. Add the thyme, cream, dried cherries and sugar.
Pureé the liver mixture while hot and add in the butter. Season with salt and pepper. Push the mousse through a strainer.
Place the mousse in small jars and cool. Cover the mousse with the smoked cherry conserva and serve with grilled bread.
*A winner has been selected for this category* Congratulations to Ashley J. in Bend!