Plums, Cherries and Haskap Berries

What could be better than watching your fruit trees produce abundant flowers in the spring? How about watching the fruit develop, or the actual eating of the fruit? Yum!
I planted fruit trees and bushes in my yard for the joy they bring and food they produce. Beautiful flowers, lovely scents and delicious fruit. I’ve got a Princess Kay plum tree, Carmine Jewel cherries, haskap berries, gogi berries, and raspberries. They each produce at different times in the season, and some I eat straight away while others become jams and jellies.

Princess Kay Plum in Blossom

Princess Kay Plum in Blossom

Carmine Jewel Cherry

Carmine Jewel Cherry

Haskap Bush in Flower

Haskap Bush in Flower

 

 

Baked Cherry Tomatoes

Cherry Tomatoes

At the end of the growing season I had a large container of cherry tomatoes (thanks to my very productive Tumblers) and decided that I needed to find a new recipe. I had simply been popping them in my mouth every time I opened the fridge door. At that rate I wasn’t going to get them all eaten, so I decided to try baking them and having them as a side dish. Here’s the delicious result.

Recipe:

Cherry tomatoes

3 cloves garlic

fresh thyme and chives

fresh ground pepper

1 tbsp olive oil, drizzled

1 tbsp lemon juice, drizzled

Bake at 350F for 20 minutes and enjoy

Life is a Bowl of Cherries

Carmine Jewel Cherries, That Is

Carmine Jewel Cherries picked today

I picked these lovely cherries today from my Carmine Jewel Cherry Tree. I wrote about my tree last year here. The Carmine Jewel (Prunus cerasus ‘SK Carmine Jewel’) was developed at the University of Saskatoon in Saskatchewan, Canada. A cross between Mongolian Cherry and the Tart Cherry, it’s hardy to zone 2a and does very well here in Edmonton. It’s fruit this year are sparse, but earlier than usual and juicy sweet. Mmm.

Carmine Jewel Cherry: A True Jewel of a Fruit Tree

Carmine Jewel Cherries

I was laying in my hammock earlier this week breathing in the sweet scent of cherry blossoms from my Carmine Jewel cherry tree. Enjoying the warm afternoon in my hammock is one of the primary joys of creating a private oasis in the city.

I planted my cherry tree two years ago, and I have visions of it growing to be it’s full height of 3 meters and shading the hammock with it’s long waving branches. This cultivar can be grown as a bush – it’ll grow to about 6 feet tall and 6 feet wide – or it can be trimmed to a more tree-like form. Mine was carefully pruned by the growers (Bylands in British Columbia) to create an appealing shape that will some day provide not only a beautiful display of white springtime blossoms, but a productive and attractive shade tree.

The Carmine Jewel (Prunus cerasus ‘SK Carmine Jewel’) was developed at the University of Saskatoon in Saskatchewan, Canada. A cross between Mongolian Cherry and the Tart Cherry, it’s hardy to zone 2a and has done well for its two winters here with me in Edmonton. It’s self-fertile, so I don’t have to worry about it being pollinated by a like-minded cherry elsewhere in the neighbourhood.

It will have tart cherries by mid-July which will mellow into a smoother tasting fruit by mid to late August. I prefer to pick them later on for eating fresh, but earlier for making jellies. I’ve heard they make great pies.

 
 
 
 
 
 

Carmine Jewel Cherry Jelly

Recipe:   Carmine Jewel Cherry Jelly

6 cups cherries

1 cup water

1 pkg powdered pectin

4 1/2 cups sugar

Wash and stem cherries and place in saucepan with water. Bring to a boil and simmer 15-20 minutes until soft. Mash fruit to press out juice and strain. Combine juice (approximately 3 1/2 cups) with pectin crystals. Heat on high and stir until boiling. Stir in sugar and bring to a vigorous boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Pour in sterilized jars and seal.

Carmine Cherry Blossoms

Carmine Jewel in Blossom