Sweet Cherry Tart recipe
When July hits, local cherries are at their perfect peak, supremely sweet and juicy. I picked up around 40 pounds last weekend from a local grower. There was no plan to can or freeze them, I just wanted to eat them until our fingers were stained red and our bellies ached. It’s a rite of summertime. One of the boxes has been sitting on the counter, and we’ve been eating them by the handful every time we pass through the kitchen.
My husband was craving something for dessert the other night, so I whipped this up, thanks to a little inspiration from Martha. This recipe starts with a simple graham cracker crust, then adds a creamy layer of sweet, rich cheesecake filling before scattering ruby red cherries on top.
You could pile any summer fruit on top of this no-bake cheesecake filling: blueberries or raspberries, sliced apricots or peaches. While the homemade graham cracker crust is so simple to make, feel free to substitute the storebought version. Your secret’s safe with me. I don’t own a tart pan, so I used a springform pan instead. If you don’t own either, an 8-9″ baking dish would work, too.
And don’t be put off by the whole “tart” title. This recipe is anything but fussy. It can be assembled in under 30 minutes before sliding it into the refrigerator to chill.
Serve this tart, fresh cherries spilling down the sides, with an iced coffee, and you will have nothing but happy campers. This is sweet summertime. Eat it up!
Sweet Cherry Tart
adapted from a Martha Stewart recipe
9 graham crackers (1 package)
2 T. + 1/4 c. sugar
6 T. unsalted butter, melted
8 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 t. vanilla extract
3/4 c. heavy cream
1 lb. fresh sweet cherries, such as Bing, pitted and halved
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a food processor, pulse graham crackers and 2 tablespoons sugar until finely ground. Add butter, and process until combined. Transfer mixture to a 9-inch tart pan or springform pan with a removable bottom. Using the base of a dry measuring cup, firmly press mixture into bottom and up sides of pan. Bake until light brown, about 10 minutes. Cool crust completely.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat cream cheese, vanilla, and remaining 1/4 cup sugar until light and fluffy. Add cream, and beat until soft peaks form; spread mixture in cooled crust. Scatter cherries on top.
- Cover and refrigerate tart at least 30 minutes or up to 1 day before serving.
I’ve owned a Progressive International Cherry Pitter (Amazon) for several years now (pictured is the newer model). It’s easy to use. My five-year old takes the job of official Cherry Pitter very seriously. This gadget works great for smaller jobs, like eating cherries fresh or using them in fruit salads or desserts. The pits drop into the bottom tray, and all three pieces pop apart to make cleaning a snap.
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