Wild Yeast Blog
It’s cherry season! I never get tired of eating them one by one, but for something different, I took a pound of dark, firm sweet cherries and baked them into a schiacciata.
Wait… a what? Say: skya-CHA-ta. Think: a Tuscan classic (often made with grapes) whose name is Italian for “squashed.” See: a golden flat bread, similar to focaccia, bejeweled with juice-oozing fruit. Taste: the sweetness of cherries, rosemary, and anise against the backdrop of an olive-oil scented bread, wonderful for breakfast or a snack.
The cherry version is a bit more messy than the grape version because pitting the cherries (and for heaven’s sake make the small investment in a cherry pitter) allows their juice to escape into the dough as you are mixing them in, making the dough both wetter and pinker. I did not find this to be especially troublesome, but an alternative to mixing the fruit in would be to sandwich it between two layers of flattened dough.
The weather is warming up here in the Northern Hemisphere. If you don’t have a sourdough starter, now would be a great time to start one from scratch. Flour, water, and patience are the only ingredients. You could be baking up a few loaves of Norwich Sourdough in as little as one week from now!