A Year-Round Guide to Franklin and Nantahala

Cheerwine Pound Cake Cheerwine Hand Pies Cheerwine Ice Cream Easy Apple, Cherry, and Cheerwine Dumplings Cheerwine Cherry Cobbler Cheerwine Cocktail Cheerwine Barbecued Chicken [caption id="attachment_168247" align="alignnone" width="1140"] Photo Credit Enabled[/caption]

Rosemary and Goat Cheese Strata

Cheerwine Pound Cake Cheerwine Hand Pies Cheerwine Ice Cream Easy Apple, Cherry, and Cheerwine Dumplings Cheerwine Cherry Cobbler Cheerwine Cocktail Cheerwine Barbecued Chicken [caption id="attachment_168247" align="alignnone" width="1140"] Photo Credit Enabled[/caption]

7 Cheerwine Recipes

photograph by Radachynskyi/iStock/Getty Images Plus

Cheerwine Pound Cake

Recipe by Sheri Castle

Yields: One 10-inch cake.

1 cup (2 sticks) butter, at room temperature
½ cup vegetable shortening, at room temperature
3 cups sugar
5 large eggs, at room temperature
3 cups all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup Cheerwine soft drink
1 teaspoon lemon extract
1 teaspoon almond extract

Red food coloring gel, as desired (optional)

Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting

Preheat the oven to 325°F. Grease and lightly flour a 10-inch, light-colored metal tube (angel food) pan, tapping out any excess flour. (A dark metal or heavy Bundt pan will make the crust too dark and thick and will interfere with the baking time.)

Beat the butter, shortening, and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer set to high speed until the mixture is light and fluffy, 5 to 7 minutes.

Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.

Whisk together the flour and salt in another large bowl. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture in thirds, alternating with half of the Cheerwine, beating only until the batter is smooth after each addition. Quickly beat in the lemon and almond extract.

If you want the cake to have a deep pink color that suggests Cheerwine, tint the batter with the gel. Start with a little and work up to the desired shade, keeping in mind that a large amount of food coloring can make the cake taste bitter.

Scrape the batter into the prepared pan. Gently tap the pan on the counter to remove air bubbles. Bake until a tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, 1 hour 15 minutes to 1 hour 30 minutes.

Cool the cake in the pan set on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Turn out the cake onto the rack and let cool to room temperature. Dust with confectioners’ sugar, if you wish.

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photograph by AlexPro9500/iStock/Getty Images Plus

Cheerwine Hand Pies

Recipe by Julie Ruble

Yield: 8 pies.

For the cheerwine cherry filling:
1 cup tart cherries, fresh or frozen
¼ cup Cheerwine soft drink
3 tablespoons sugar, plus more for sprinkling
1 tablespoon cornstarch

For the hand pie dough:
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons powdered sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup butter
3 ounces cream cheese
½ cup milk
½ teaspoon almond extract
1 egg whisked with 1 teaspoon water for egg wash

For the cheerwine glaze:
½ cup powdered sugar
2 teaspoons Cheerwine

Prepare Cheerwine cherry filling: Place cherries and Cheerwine in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. After cherries lose considerable juice at about 10-15 minutes, remove from heat. In a small bowl, mix sugar and cornstarch. Pour mixture into hot cherries and mix well. Return mixture to stove and cook over low heat until thickened, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool. Cover and place in fridge until chilled.

Prepare hand pies: Preheat oven to 425° and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. In the bowl of a food processor, mix flour, powdered sugar, baking powder, and salt. Add cream cheese and butter into flour mixture and pulse about 6 times to cut the fat into the flour. Add milk and almond extract and blend until a loose dough begins to form.

Turn dough out onto a floured surface. Lightly flour top of dough and roll it out to a 12 x 15-inch square. Cut it into about 16 circles with a 3 ½-inch cookie cutter. Reroll scraps if necessary. Spread 2-3 tablespoons of chilled cherry pie filling into the middle of 8 of the circles, leaving at least a ½-inch margin around the edges. Place 8 other circles on top of the filled ones, using a fork to crimp the edges closed. Poke vents in each assembled hand pie. Don’t worry if they look messy and the cherry filling oozes out a bit; they’ll turn out cute!

Bake and glaze: Brush hand pies with egg wash mixture and sprinkle with extra sugar. Bake in the 425° oven for 15-17 minutes, until the pie tops are golden brown. After allowing pies to cool for approximately 30 minutes, whisk together powdered sugar and Cheerwine in a small measuring cup with a pour spout. Drizzle over top of the hand pies. Serve immediately.

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photograph by Magone/iStock/Getty Images Plus

Cheerwine Ice Cream

Recipe courtesy of Chef Chuck Nelson of The Table at Crestwood in Boone.

Yields: 5 cups.

2 large eggs
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sweetened condensed milk (about half a 14-ounce can)
3/4 cup evaporated milk (about half a 12-ounce can)
1 1/4 cups Cheerwine, chilled
1 cup whole milk

In a large heatproof bowl, whisk together eggs and sugar until pale yellow and combined; set aside. In a small saucepan set over medium heat, bring heavy cream just to a boil. Very slowly, add hot cream to egg mixture, whisking constantly. Set bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, making sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture coats the back of a spoon, about 4 minutes. Remove from heat and add condensed and evaporated milks. Chill in refrigerator until completely cold. Whisk in Cheerwine and milk. Freeze in ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions until the mixture has the consistency of soft serve. Place ice cream in freezer until set to your liking. Serve and enjoy. 

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photograph by Sheri Castle

Easy Apple, Cherry, and Cheerwine Dumplings

Recipe by Sheri Castle

Yield: 8 dumplings.

1 (8-ounce) can refrigerated crescent roll dough
1 sweet-tart baking apple, cored and cut into 8 wedges
1/3 cup dried cherries
4 tablespoons butter, melted
4 tablespoons packed brown sugar
½ teaspoon apple pie spice
½ teaspoon vanilla
1/3 cup Cheerwine (not diet)
2 to 3 tablespoons lemon juice
½ cup sifted powdered sugar
Lemon zest, to garnish

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Separate the dough into triangles. Place an apple wedge and a few cherries on the wide edge of each piece, roll up, and arrange in a single layer in a shallow baking dish that holds them snugly. Scatter the remaining cherries into the dish.

Whisk together the melted butter, brown sugar, spice, and vanilla, and spoon over the tops of the dumplings. Pour the Cheerwine around, not over, the dumplings.

Bake until deep golden brown, about 30 minutes.

Whisk enough lemon juice into the powdered sugar to make thick glaze to drizzle over the dumplings. Garnish with lemon zest. Serve warm.

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photograph by ideabug/iStock/Getty Images Plus

Cheerwine Cherry Cobbler

Recipe by Steve Gordon

Yield: 6 to 9 servings.

For the filling:
1 to 2 pounds fresh cherries, pits and stems removed
2 (12 ounce) Cheerwine sodas — regular, not diet
½ teaspoon cocoa
½ teaspoon almond extract

For the topping:
1 cup self-rising flour
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup granulated sugar
1 egg, slightly beaten
1 tablespoon cornstarch
½ stick unsalted butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350º.

Place cherries in a colander and rinse under cold running water. Remove stems and pits. Split the cherries for best results.

Place cherries in a small sauce pot over medium heat. Add 2 bottles of Cheerwine soda. Add cocoa and stir well. Let simmer until syrup has reduced to about one cup liquid. Remove from heat and stir in almond extract.

Generously butter a 2 quart casserole-baking dish. Pour the cooked cherry mixture into the casserole dish.

Place flour and cornstarch in a sifter, and sift into a large mixing bowl. Add brown sugar. Add granulated sugar. Whisk dry ingredients together.

Add one whole egg to center of dry ingredients. Break egg with a fork and continue to stir until ingredients are mixed well and crumbly. Use your fingers and break apart any large lumps that may have formed. Spread the topping evenly over the cherries. Melt the butter and drizzle over the topping.

Bake at 350º degrees for about 30 minutes or until crust tests done with a toothpick. Remove from oven and place on wire rack to cool. Serve warm, topped with ice cream or whipped topping if desired.

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Cheerwine Cocktail

Recipe by Amy Brinkley

1 part bourbon
3 parts Cheerwine
Splash of lime juice (about ¼ ounce)
Lime wedge and/or maraschino cherry (optional)

Pour bourbon and Cheerwine in a glass over ice. Splash with lime juice and stir well to combine. Garnish with maraschino cherry and lime wedge, if desired.

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photograph by Charlotte & Johnny Autry

Cheerwine Barbecued Chicken

Recipe by Sheri Castle

Yield: 6 to 8 servings.

For the sauce:
1 tablespoon butter
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 cup ketchup
1 cup Cheerwine
3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
¼ teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
½ teaspoon dry mustard
2 tablespoons white distilled vinegar

For the chicken:
1 tablespoon dried thyme
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon paprika
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon onion powder
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
12 skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs (about 4 pounds)

For the sauce: Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the minced garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Stir in the remaining ingredients.

Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and simmer until the sauce is slightly thickened, about
30 minutes. Use soon or cool, cover, and refrigerate for up to one week.

For the chicken: Stir together the thyme, oregano, paprika, cumin, onion powder, salt, and pepper. Pat the chicken dry and then coat with the seasoning mixture. Place the chicken in a zip-top plastic freezer bag. Seal and refrigerate for 4 hours.

Preheat the grill to 350° to 400° (medium-high) heat. (If using charcoal, the embers should be covered in gray ash with glowing centers.) Oil the grill grate generously.

Place the chicken skin-side down on the hot grate; cook until the skin browns, about 8 minutes. Turn the chicken over and continue grilling until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest portion registers 170°, about 5 to 8 minutes longer. Transfer 1 cup of the barbecue sauce to a small dish, reserving the rest. Brush the skin side of the chicken with sauce from the dish; turn skin side down and cook 2 minutes. Brush chicken with more sauce; turn skin side up and grill 2 minutes.

Arrange the chicken on a platter, tent loosely with foil, and let rest for 5 minutes. Discard any remaining sauce in the small bowl because it has come in contact with the raw chicken and would be unsafe to eat uncooked.

Serve the barbecued chicken warm with the reserved sauce.

Note: Chicken thighs or leg quarters are best for grilling because white meat pieces dry out easily. If you barbecue bone-in breasts, keep them on the coolest part of the grill. Boneless, skinless chicken breasts are not a good choice for this recipe.

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This story was published on May 09, 2023

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