Split the vanilla bean in half and with a back of a paring knife scrape the inside of its seeds. In a medium saucepan, add the 4 cups of cherries, red wine, 1/2 cup sugar and the vanilla bean and it's seeds. Cook over medium heat for 15 minutes, remove vanilla bean. Keep stewed cherries warm.
To make Cherry Chocolate Beignets: In a large saucepan, heat up the oil for frying to 360 degrees F. In a medium bowl, sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt, set aside. In another medium bowl whisk eggs with oil, remaining 1/4 cup sugar and milk. Add flour mixture to egg mixture, stir in melted chocolate and dried cherries. Roll 2 tablespoons of batter into balls. Fry each side for 1 minute. Transfer beignets to a rack.
To serve, place about 1/3 cup of the poached cherries with liquid in a soup bowl. Place 2 to 3 beignets on top and garnish with Cocoa-Sugar Dusting.
In a small bowl combine cocoa powder and sugar.
Option: Serve with a dollop of whipped cream on top
This recipe was provided by a chef, restaurant or culinary professional. It has not been tested for home use.
Recipe courtesy of Executive Pastry Chef Christine McCabe-Tentori, Sugar, Chicago, IL