One tip I can share with you is that this "lightly whipped cream" of mine, is actually my lazy version of whipping cream. You see, I hate dirtying up an extra bowl, just to whip some cream just for me - especially when *sigh* I still don't have a hand mixer (just whisk and stand mixer - weird, I know). I also don't have one of those cool whipping gadgets (and as much of a gadget junkie as I am, just can't justify it...anyway, I digress - I was just so distracted by the pretty red color of the gadget - which actually brings us back to the pretty red cherries!).
So, what's a girl to do? Here you go, it's not terribly earth shattering, but you never know right?
Cream Topping - Shaken, Not Whipped
1/3 cup heavy whipping cream
1 Tablespoon confectioners' sugar (or a bit less, depending on how sweet you like the cream to be)
1/4 teaspoon extract (I used almond here, but I usually use vanilla)
Combine all three ingredients in an empty, clean jelly jar or Mason jar. Put on the lid and shake vigorously until thick. (It only takes about a minute - incidentally, if you keep shaking, eventually you'll have butter - as a random aside, this is how Pioneers made their butter when they were walking across the Country to Utah. It is a fun thing to do with kids some time and the butter is great and creamy. Just omit the sugar and flavoring and shake the cream. You could add a small pinch of salt if you wish.)
Ricotta Pancakes with Brown Sugar Cherry Sauce
(Source: Bon Appetit June 2008 via Epicurious)
1/2 cup (or more) water, divided
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 cups halved pitted fresh Bing cherries or other dark sweet cherries (about 14 ounces unpitted cherries)
2 tablespoons (packed) golden brown sugar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
3/4 cup unbleached all purpose flour
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/3 cups whole-milk ricotta cheese
4 large egg yolks
1/2 cup whole milk
3 large egg whites
Vegetable oil (for brushing)
Whisk 1/4 cup water and cornstarch in small bowl. Melt butter in medium nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add cherries, 1/4 cup water, and brown sugar; stir until sugar dissolves. Increase heat to medium-high; add cornstarch mixture and stir until mixture boils and thickens, adding water by tablespoonfuls if sauce is very thick, about 1 minute. Remove from heat; stir in lemon juice.
Whisk flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in small bowl. Using electric mixer, beat ricotta cheese and egg yolks in large bowl at medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 1 minute. Reduce mixer speed to low; add flour mixture alternately with milk in 2 additions each, beating just until blended and scraping down sides of bowl as needed.
Using electric mixer fitted with clean beaters, beat egg whites in medium bowl until stiff but not dry. Fold 1/4 of whites into ricotta mixture to lighten, then fold in remaining whites in 3 more additions.
Heat griddle or large nonstick skillet over medium heat; brush griddle lightly with oil. Drop batter by generous 1/4 cupfuls onto griddle; spread each pancake with offset spatula to form 3 1/2-inch round. Cook until bubbles form on tops of pancakes and bottoms are golden, about 3 minutes. Turn pancakes over and cook until golden brown on bottoms, about 2 minutes.
Transfer pancakes to plates. Top with cherry sauce and cream, if desired, and serve.