Amarene Sciroppate (Sour Cherries in Syrup) is a great way to utilize the last of the Evans Sour Cherry harvest, canning them whole in a simple syrup made of sugar, water, and just a touch of bourbon vanilla powder.
Song of the day: “Gravity” by John Mayer.
My dreams are crimson red and taste like sour cherries.
We have been blessed with quite a few pounds of sour cherries to work with, from a couple of dear friends that have an acreage just outside Edmonton, Margaret and Raymond. We got to share their company, wonderful meals, chats, laughs and the sour cherry harvest. Our hands are stained red, our hearts are full, and so is our freezer, pantry, and stomach. We tried to give them justice in many possible ways, to showcase their amazing, unique, flavor in different combinations. We’ve frozen some bags for future use, we’ve made sour cherry jams, sour cherries in whiskey (recipe from Margaret, Kitchen Frau), and today’s recipe Amarene Sciroppate, as we call them in Italy, that is Sour Cherries in Syrup. With the jam, we’ve also made homemade sour cherry pop tarts (recipe coming soon) and sour cherry shortbread squares, we’ve been spreading it on toast or eating it by the spoonfuls.
That’s why, when we go to bed, tired but happy, our dreams taste like sour cherries.
The taste of sour Evans cherries was something unfamiliar to me before living in Alberta, Canada. I feel truly blessed I get to experience new products, get to know new people and develop new tastes, and friendships. This end of summer is becoming my favorite time of the year, between the harvesting, canning, freezing, the socializing that comes with it, and the beautiful weather we’re still having.
Amarene Sciroppate (Sour Cherries in Syrup) is one of the easiest and quickest way to preserve some spare sour cherries.
First of all, they do not need to be pitted (you can if you want), which is the most labor intensive task when dealing with this fruit. You just need to dust them with sugar and bourbon vanilla powder (or vanilla, if that’s what you have), cover with a towel and let sit in the refrigerator for 24 hours. The day after you separate the sugar from the fruit, add the sugar to a pot on the stove on medium-low heat, add the water and bring to a boil. After simmering for about 15 minutes, you add the cherries to this simple syrup and cook over low heat for about ten more minutes, removing the foam from the top as you would do if you were making a jam. When the fruits are softened, fill the sterilized jars, cover with the liquid and put on the lids. That’s it.
It is best to use the Sour cherries in syrup after 1 month, they will have the time to mingle with the syrup, get more plumped up and juicy. You can then use them to decorate cakes, cupcakes, ice cream, top your Italian zeppole, remembering to tell people there’s still the pit, or you can take out the pit and add the cherries to your pies, tarts, or galettes. You could also make a compote for those Sunday brunches, or how about a sauce for something savory?
As soon as you open the jar the sugary aroma fills the air and you’ll just want to take a spoon and taste them. Sweet, plump, and juicy, with just a little bit of tartness left in them, they keep intact the flavor of the summer, of the sunny days that kissed them, of the happy days that filled your memories.
Song of the day: “Gravity” by John Mayer.Print
- 500 g sour cherries, washed and gently dried
- 250 g super fine granulated sugar
- 1 tsp bourbon vanilla powder (or vanilla extract)
- 150 ml (2/3 cup) water
- Gently wash the cherries, taking the stalk out, and spread them on a clean towel to dry completely.
- In a large bowl, mix the amarene (sour) cherries with the sugar and bourbon vanilla powder.
- Cover with a towel and let sit for 24 hours
- The day after, separate the cherries from the sugar. Add the sugar to a pot on the stove on medium-low heat, add the water and bring to a boil.
- Simmer for 12-15 minutes, then add the cherries and cook over low heat for about ten more minutes.
- With a spoon remove the foam from the top, as you would do if you were making a jam.
- When the fruits are softened, take off heat, fill the jars with the cherries and cover with the liquid, put on the lids, and tighten up well.
- Turn the jar upside down and let cool at room temperature, then store upright in a dark and cool place.
1) To sterilize the jars, wash them and place them upright on a tray, with the lids, in the oven at 170° C (340°F) for about 15 minutes. Turn off the oven and let sit for few more minutes.
2) You might end up with more liquid than what you can fit in the jar. We saved it to add it to our smoothies.
3) Sour cherries in syrup can be stored for up to 3 months, keeping the jars in a cool, dry place away from direct light. It is best to wait at least 1 month before consuming the cherries. After you’ve opened the jar, store in the refrigerator and consume the cherries within 3-4 days.
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