For the cherry base
- 500g sweet cherry, washed and stoned
One of the delights of the summer, cherries are much loved for their succulent texture, flavour…
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- zest and ¼ orange
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- 85g caster sugar
- 1 tbsp chopped pistachio nuts
- 100ml crème fraîche
- icing sugar, for dusting
For the sponge topping
- 2 large egg
- 3 tbsp caster sugar
- ¼ tsp almond or vanilla extract
- 1 tsp orange flower water
- 75ml double cream
- 3 tbsp plain flour
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Heat a large frying pan. When hot, add the cherries, lemon juice, orange zest and sugar. Allow the cherries to cook and release their juices for 4-5 mins until they are tender and the juices are syrupy.
Transfer the cherries to the base of a 20-22cm diameter ceramic pie dish. At this point, you can chill the dish until half an hour before you want to eat, then finish it.
Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. To make the topping, put the eggs and sugar in a large bowl and beat until light and foamy – an electric whisk is best for this. Add the extract and orange flower water as you whisk.
When the mixture is very light and airy, whisk in the cream. Finally, sieve in the flour and a pinch of salt. Carefully fold them into the egg mixture with a large metal spoon until there are no lumps.
Pour the sponge mixture over the cherries and use the back of a spoon to cover evenly. Bake for 20 mins until well risen and evenly browned.
While the sponge is baking, stir the chopped pistachios into the crème fraîche and spoon into a serving dish. When the sponge is cooked, remove it from the oven and let it cool for 10 mins before dusting with icing sugar and serving with the pistachio crème fraîche.