Fresh cherries are one of our favourite seasonal treats and here in New Zealand we're lucky to have them at their sweetest during the Christmas and holiday season.

While they're already delicious on their own there are myriad ways to make the most of these festive fruits. From pairing with lamb to pickling for gifts, try one of these very cherry recipes:

1. Sweet cherries in vanilla red wine syrup

Sweet cherries in vanilla red wine syrup. Picture / Annabel Langbein Media
Sweet cherries in vanilla red wine syrup. Picture / Annabel Langbein Media

These cherries, with red wine syrup make for a decadent dessert when served with ice cream or pannacotta. And why not whip up a batch to give away as Christmas gifts?


2. Prosciutto, cherry, goat's curd and vincotto salad

Full of flavour, you'll want to enjoy this salad all summer.

3. Cashew and coconut crumb on grilled fruit

For a quick and easy dessert, whip up this cashew and coconut crumb and sprinkle over cherries and other summer stone fruit.

4. Easy fresh cherry tarts

Karena & Kasey Bird share their simple dessert, served warm with a big dollop of ice cream.

A sweet cherry deal:

Central Otago cherries are now available on GrabOne from $39 including delivery anywhere in New Zealand. The deal offers a cheaper price compared to purchasing directly from the Central Otago Cherry Team website.

5. Fresh cherry and almond cake

Cherries are dotted through this light, moist cake making it a delicious afternoon tea or dessert.

6. Christmas turkey stuffing

Deviate from the usual cranberry-turkey combo this Christmas and instead ramp things up with cherry stuffing.

7. Cherry and hazelnut roulade

Make the most of the new season cherries with this light, scrumptious roulade.

8. Sweet pickled cherries

These make a fabulous accompaniment to lamb, yoghurt and goat's cheese – and what's more they will keep for a few years.