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Chilled Black Cherry Soup with Asbach Uralt & Crème Fraîche

by Marcel Biró & Shannon Kring Biró

This soup is inspired by Marcel’s childhood summers in Europe, where black cherries dangled abundantly from gnarled bushes on his grandparents’ farm.  It perfectly captures the sun-drenched flavors of summer and is as simple to make as it is refreshing to eat.  It is the ideal prelude to any warm-weather meal, but we especially like it served before pork or filet mignon. 

If you can’t find high-quality ripe cherries, we suggest using sour German cherries in a jar.  Instead of sugar, you may wish to use some German cherry syrup to taste.


Serves 4

1 ½ pounds ripe black cherries, un-pitted, divided
2/3 cup fruity white wine
1 cinnamon stick
2/3 cup water
2 tablespoons sugar
Grated peel and juice of 1 lemon
1 ¼ cups crème fraîche or German double cream, divided
2 tablespoons Asbach Uralt

  1. Remove the stems and pits from the cherries but do not discard.  Place one-half of the pits in a clean kitchen towel or freezer bag and crush them with a mallet.  Keep the remaining pits intact. 
  2. In a large saucepan, combine the crushed pits, whole pits, stems, wine, cinnamon, water, sugar, lemon peel, and lemon juice.  Bring to a boil over medium heat, and then cover and simmer for 10 minutes. 
  3. Remove from heat and strain the liquid through a fine-mesh sieve.  Return the liquid to the pan. Stir in 1 cup of the crème fraîche and all but one-quarter of the cherries. Allow to simmer over medium-low heat for 5 minutes, whisking occasionally.
  4. In a food processor or blender, purée the cherry mixture until smooth.  Refrigerate until cool, and then whisk in the Asbach Uralt.  Chill until ready to serve. 



Because of its vibrant color, we suggest serving this soup in a plain white bowl or in a chilled, clear glass bowl or cup.  Drizzle the remaining ¼ cup crème fraîche atop the soup and garnish with the remaining cherries.


Quick Tip: What’s Asbach Uralt?
Asbach Uralt is Germany’s most famous brandy.  It’s fantastic on its own or in sauces, soups, or desserts. 

Wine Pairings
Cuvée Rheingau Riesling

2001 Domaine Rene Mure
Pinot Blanc Rouffach
Alsace, France



© Marcel Biró and Shannon Kring Biró. Adapted for Sally’s Place from  Biró: European-Inspired Cuisine cookbook (Gibbs Smith 2005). All rights reserved.

Photo credit Marty Snortum.

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