When cooking with cherries, sometimes it's just fine to leave the pits in. However, many recipes do require the extra step. Here is our simple and efficient method for removing cherry stones.
A cherry pitter is one of those convenient but limited use gadgets we can live without. Instead, we employ something we already have lying around the kitchen: a metal piping or pastry tip. Just remove the stem and place the cherry, stem side down, over the pastry tip. Press firmly and voilà – out pops the pit. We use a rounded tip to avoid potential accidents, but a sharper star tip may also be used.
We have tried other cherry pitting techniques using household items like chopsticks and paperclips, but always return to the pastry tip method. (We'd like to credit the original source for this tip but cannot recall whether we picked it up from Martha Stewart or Cook's Illustrated.) How do you pit cherries?
This post has been updated. Originally published 06/25/09.