Small and sweet, large and fleshy, red or black: cherries are versatile all-rounders. Mostly they hang hidden under the leaves in groups. There they get darker and darker until they finally fall down. In order to protect them from this painful fall, they are usually picked directly from the tree beforehand. With a basket called “Chratte” (braided basket, which you hang around your hip with a belt) it goes step by step up the ladder towards the top of the tree. In order to pick the sensitive cherries, not only balance is required, but also a flexible upper body. It rarely happens that a person exaggerates and loses the ladder under his feet, but this can end quite badly!

Cherries are not only here to eat

While some make ear jewellery with them, others measure themselves in the “Chriesisteispucke” (cherry stone spitting). If you think you can spit the little stones the furthest you can prove your skills at the Swiss Championship, which takes place on 4 July 2019 at Zurich main station. Entertainment is guaranteed! If you’d rather swallow the stones, you don’t have to be afraid. In any case, no tree has yet grown in my stomach. By the way, cherries are also known for supporting digestion thanks to the numerous ballast and secondary plant substances they contain. They also contain a lot of vitamin C, but they have to be as fresh as possible, preferably directly from the tree.

And finally, of course, the Kirsch (schnapps/hard liquor made of cherries) should not be missing. As the fruits are so sensitive – they do not tolerate frost, heavy rain makes them burst, the invasive asian vinegar fly (Drosophila suzukii) has caused total failure in recent years – they can never all be sold. In order to be able to use them anyway, they end up in a barrel without a stalk and are then distilled to Kirsch. One litre of high-proof alcohol requires around 10 kilos of fruit. For comparison: in very good years a tree carries up to 100 kilos of cherries.

Whether in liquid form or fresh from the tree: anyone who wants to do something good for their health and is looking for a fruit that has even made it to Swiss championships hits the bull’s eye with swiss cherries.

Cherry cake

800 grams of fresh cherries are needed for a delicious swiss cherry chake. How it becomes an eye-catcher can be seen in the video.

  • 1 cake dough à approx. 270 g
  • 40 g ground hazelnuts
  • 800 g cherries

Put the cake in the oven for 15 min at 180°C (circulating air).

  • 3 eggs (or 2 large ones)
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 2 dl full cream

Put the cake again in the oven for 15 min at 180°C (circulating air). Take it out. Allow to cool. Garnish (e.g. with lemon balm). Ready.


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