"Dessert is food, not just cake," says Spencer Budros, pastry chef and co-owner of Pistachio, a terrific shop in Columbus, Ohio. Pistachio sells over 50 types of "food," including a cherry-mascarpone tart with a cornmeal-cookie crust. That number will grow when Pistachio opens a restaurant next year, complete with waiters and savory dishes.
The achingly perfect, meringue-like mantle of this classic pie is almost identical to the classic 19th-century Russian dessert referred to as Fallen Ruins. Fallen desserts resemble a hot mess when they are served, but you will want to make this for your family again and again. It proves that visual perfection isn't a prerequisite for eating pleasure
Megan Garrelts, pastry chef at Bluestem in Kansas City, Missouri, grew up eating pies filled with cherries from her family's backyard tree. In this recipe, she combines the fruit with another classic American dessert, oatmeal cookies.
Most chefs in France's Limousin region say that this creamy cake tastes best made with unpitted cherries. If this is too rustic for you, pit the cherries, roll them in sugar and freeze them; the frozen sugar grains seal the fruit, so juice doesn't stain the batter. Purists insist on local black cherries, but Paula Wolfert thinks you can use any bold-flavored fruit, like apricots or plums.
Every year during Christmas week, executive pastry chef Dominique Ansel of Daniel in New York City serves guests complimentary mini buches de Noel. His version here is lighter than many, thanks to the beaten egg whites in the batter and the use of whipped cream in place of buttercream as frosting.
These addictive shortbread cookies from pastry chef Umber Ahmad are chocolaty and buttery, and studded with chewy bits of dried cherries. Their secret ingredient: grated lime zest, which adds a subtle flavor.