A friend (thank you, Julie!) offered her dad’s cherries to me the other day. The tree was loaded (actually overloaded – never seen anything like it!) with ripe, tasty cherries. My friend’s daughter helped me pick them. We basically grabbed handfuls at a time, there were so many. We filled three buckets in about 45 minutes.
Now, here’s the dilemma. I love fresh cherries, but you can only eat so much. We are not fans of cherry pie (texture issues probably), or really anything with smooshy cherries in them (cobblers, crisps, sauces) at my house.
But I never say no to free things, that’s part of my “cottage mentality.” And I’ve found the more you say “yes” to things offered to you, the more you are offered!
Well, I LOVE dried cherries, so I decided to try it, never having done so (though I’ve dried blueberries and tomatoes), and even though I think the ones they sell in the store are the tart pie cherries. Oh well.
Um, but I don’t have a pitter. The local store with the cheap pitters are sold out (everyone else’s trees are loaded, too, it seems). I have to wait a day until we go into town, hoping the cherries won’t go bad because some had a little mold and we were just throwing them in the buckets.
This is the not-so-frugal part.
I’m at Bed, Bath, and Beyond looking at the wall of kitchen gadgets. The cheapest one is $12.99. It pits one cherry at a time and you squeeze the handles together… One. At. A. Time.
I’m picturing the three buckets at home brimming with cherries. Ah, they’ve got my right where they want me.
And I couldn’t even find one of those 20% coupons that come EVERY WEEK in the mail!
I end up with this:
This puppy set me back $14.99, but that extra $2 was well-spent this time: FOUR AT A TIME! How sweet is that?
And, no carpel tunnel- you just close the lid all the way. My hand and wrist thank you, little gadget.
And when you open it, four little pits await you in the handy catch tray.
Please ignore the bluish-black stained thumbnail. Did you know that cherry juice stains look like dirt under your nails after it dries? The learning never stops, folks.
Two hours later, I was SO happy that the local store was sold out and I ended up at BBandB. Would I have been looking at 6 more hours doing one at a time? Who knows, but this was the best $14.99 I’ve ever spent (though it does pay to shop ahead and keep those coupons ;-).
And I’m freezing the smaller ones and ones I had to cut (no wasting here…) just like I do berries to add a few at a time to smoothies. I think the cherries will add a nice, sweet flavor to the berries I usually use.
I still have a large bowl full left that wouldn’t fit anywhere, and I could go back if I had the time…