From the Brisbane Farmers Markets: Benfatti’s Amarena Cherries

For most people, Wednesday means hump day and probably not much else. But if you happen to work in the city it means something quite different…  

Because for people who work in the CBD, Wednesday is market day!

Every Wednesday  from 10.00 am – 6.00 pm, Jan Power’s  Farmers Markets turns Reddacliff Place into a bustling market place for fresh produce, gourmet delights and yummy food stalls.

I love my weekly trip to the markets with a passion and over the weeks I’ve developed a little ritual:

Each week I visit a different stall and buy something different to the previous week. 

My challenge when I get home is to do something creative with it it – something that forces me to get out of my cooking comfort zone! 

It recently hit me that other people might be keen to do this too.

So from now on I’m going to going to be sharing my weekly market purchases with you, along with some ideas for what you can do with it when you get home.

Sometimes there will be recipes, other times there’ll just some simple serving suggestions. And while I can’t guarantee the results will always be pretty, I swear that they will always taste good! 

So without further ado here is this week’s find from the Brisbane Farmers Markets

Amarena Cherries

I was wandering past the Benfatti stall when some distinctive blue and white jars caught my eye. These turned out to be Amarena Cherries and as a hardcore fan of anything cherry-flavoured I immediately decided they were coming home with me!

What are they?

Amarena Cherries are small wild cherries that grow in Bologna in Italy. In 1905 a fellow called Genaro Fabbri started bottling these cherries with syrup and their distinctive flavour has made them a favourite all over the world. 

What can I do with them?

The cherries have a tart sweetness that make them a perfect match for creamy dairy. Try them… 

 – on top of gelato or icecream

 – mixed into yoghurt

 – in a cheese cake – Paddington Deli & Epicerie make one which is apparently mind-blowing!

 – in a glass of crisp bubbly Prosecco

I decided to go with savoury rather than sweet and make a decadent favourite of mine – Crumbed Camembert with Amarena Cherry dipping sauce.

Crumbed Camembert and Amarena Cherry  Feature

Crumbed Camembert with Amarena Cherry Dipping Sauce

Ingredients

1 x wheel of Camembert

1 cup bread crumbs

Plain flour for dredging

Bread crumbs – I used fresh but you could use pre-packaged if you perfer

1 x egg and 1/2 cup of milk mixed together

Vegetable oil for frying

For the dipping sauce

10 x Amarena  Cherries chopped

1 x tablespoon of juice from the jar

1/4 cup dry red wine

1/2 tsp grain mustard 

Brisbane Markets - Ingredients for Crumbed Camembert

Let’s Cook!

1. Cut the Camembert wheel into eight wedges – put them in the fridge to keep them firm while you get the crumbing stuff organised

2. Put the bread crumbs and flour two separate, decent sized plates. Mix the egg and milk together in a small bowl.

3. Time to start the sauce – put the chopped cherries, red wine and mustard in a small sauce pan and simmer for 5 minutes until slightly thickened. Allow to cool slightly

4. Now back to the Camembert! Take a wedge of cheese and roll it in the flour, then dip it in the egg & milk mix. Then roll it in bread crumbs until completely coated.

Place the crumbed wedges on a plate while you get the frying pan ready.

Since you’ve opened that bottle of red why not have a glass to celebrate getting half way through the recipe?

5.  Heat the oil in a deep frying pan until a cube of bread sizzles when added. Add the crumbed wedges slowly so you don’t burn yourself. 

6. Turn the wedges in the oil – they’ll cook quite quickly if the oil is hot so be ready to start doing this straight away. 

7. Once they are browned all over, get those bad boys out o the oil and place on paper towel to drain, 

8. Arrange wedges on a a serving plate.  Stir a big tablespoon of the cherry juice form the jar into the sauce, then spoon it into a ramekin to serve

These are best eaten when they’re piping hot so the cheese ooozes out when you bite them.

Grab a wedge as soon as you can hold it without burning yourself, and dip it into the luscious sweet & savoury cherry sauce.

You might have some kind of religious experience at this point. Just have a another wedge and go with it. 

Brisbane Farmers Markets - Crumbed Camembert and Amarena Cherry

To get a taste of Italy in your kitchen visit the Benfatti stall at the Jan Powers Farmers Markets every Wednesday in the Brisbane CBD.

Otherwise you can shop from their full range of products online at www.benfatti.com.au. 

Have you ever tried Amarena Cherries? Are you obsessed with cheese? Please tell me I’m not the only one… 

Rachel - Ed

About Rachel

Thirty-something Brisbane lover, trying to find the balance between FOMO and YOLO. Semi-retired party girl who loves planning itineraries for big nights out. Often found dragging 3 boys around your local farmers markets or attempting to sneak out for dinner with my husband, The Chef.

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2 Responses to “From the Brisbane Farmers Markets: Benfatti’s Amarena Cherries”

  1. I have never heard of these and I grew up on a cherry farm – hahah! They look totally delicious and I love your ideas of doing different things with market produce! I’m totally into supporting the little guy rather than the big supermarket and the food is always better!

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