Re-ignite the summer feeling once the weather cools by keeping a jar of Cinnamon Bourbon Cherries on standby. These cherries will liven up dessert, garnish your weekend cocktail or make the perfect edible gift.
Prepare yourself. I’m about to start declaring my undying love for cherries again.
When a love is so deep and pure as the love I have for fresh, ripe, dark & beautiful cherries, I find it hard to accept that they are in season for just 6 weeks of the year. Yes – just 6 weeks.
It’s just not fair.
Fortunately for me, my local farmshop does stock frozen cherries year round. And I do regularly use them in smoothies and compotes. But when cherry season hits, I do like to make something with the fresh produce so that I can dive into it when the weather turns chilly in the autumn. My obvious salvation is cherry jam, but this year I’ve also put aside a jar of Cinnamon Bourbon Cherries.
Cinnamon Bourbon Cherries are as straightforward and alcoholic as they sound: fresh, pitted cherries cooked briefly in sweetened bourbon and gently infused with cinnamon spice.
Life is sweet.
Oh yes, life is very sweet.
Once bottled these Cinnamon Bourbon Cherries will keep for several months, making them the perfect late autumn treat or edible gift.
Bonus: the flavour of these cherries will keep on developing the longer they are left.
Cinnamon Bourbon Cherries don’t need much in the way of company
(just me and a spoon). A slice of plain cake to soak up that intoxicating liquid and a little splodge of cream will set your dessert repertoire on fire.
If you are planning on using the cherries purely to garnish cocktails, feel free to omit the cinnamon to make the flavour more universal. And if you don’t happen to own a cherry pitter, fear not. The Flavor Bender has an innovative way to remove those pesky cherry stones (and a divine recipe for Kahlua Cherry Ice Cream – sigh, sigh, sigh).
It feels good to know that I have my secret love tenderly tucked away in a little jar ready for the autumn. And with a pot of Amaretto Pears also sitting primly in my fridge, I feel I’m doing fruit justice right now. Of course, my mind is now in overdrive concocting more fruit-alcohol marriages to make before the summer is out. If you have a good combination, let me know – I have plenty more jars to fill.
These cherries will liven up dessert, garnish your weekend cocktail or make the perfect edible gift.
- 300 g/ 1 1/3 cup Fresh cherres
- 240 ml/ 1 cup Bourbon
- 60 g/ 1/4 cup White sugar
- 1 cinnamon stick (about 10cm/ 4 inches in length) - optional
Pit the cherries
Put the sugar and cinnamon into a small saucepan and pour the Bourbon over it. Gently heat to dissolve the sugar then bring up to almost boiling
Add the cherries and cook for 5 minutes. take off the heat
Transfer the cherries to a sterilised jar, wedging the cinnamon into the middle as you fill it. Ensure that the cherries are well packed and fill to the top with the bourbon syrup. Ensure that all of the cherries are completely submerged. Seal and leave to cool down
Store in the fridge - they will keep for several months
If you have plenty of liquid left once the jar has been filled, return the liquid to the heat and boil until reduced by half. Allow to cool then use the syrup to top vanilla ice cream
Pack the cooked fruit into a sterilised jar with a small neck since it is easier to wedge the cherries tightly to stop them floating to the top of the jar. if using 2 smaller jars, break the cinnamon stick in half and add a piece to each jar.