I love preserved cherries and they make a wonderful visual and taste treat in a fine cocktail. Earlier this week, Lynn offered a recipe and promised to report back on her success. In the meantime, here’s my favorite preserved cherries recipe. The only other one I’ve tried was basically cherries and a lot of (not inexpensive) Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur. I found the resulting cherries to be a bit too boozy and bossy for drinks. The ones below are versatile. They are perfect in a range of cocktails, including a Manhattan, Red Hook, or Old-Fashioned.
This recipe hails from Jason Wilson’s excellent book Boozehound. He notes that the recipe is “adapted from a recipe by Todd Thrasher of Restaurant Eve, the Majestic, and PX, Alexandria Virginia.” My husband and I have made these twice now and totally recommend them:
- 2 pints Bing cherries, pitted
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 2 1/4 cups sugar (we use beet sugar, but either would work well)
- Juice of 1 medium lemon
- 1 tablespoon almond extract.
Place the cherries in a shallow heatproof glass or ceramic bowl.
In a medium saucepan over high heat, combine 1 1/4 cups of water and the salt. Bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the salt. Remove from the heat; allow to cool for 10 minutes, then pour the liquid over the cherries. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Drain the cherries, discarding the liquid, and rinse them with cold water. Wash the bowl in which the cherries were refrigerated and return them to the clean bowl.
In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the sugar, lemon juice, and 1/4 cup of water. Bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar, then remove from the heat and add the almond extract. Pour the mixture over the cherries; let cool, then cover and refrigerate overnight, stirring occasionally. Store in a mason jar and they’ll last a good while. Enjoy!
If you have a favorite recipe or you try these out, please comment. We’d love to hear about it and share your wisdom. Cheers.