These cherries have a much more complex, sweet-and-savory taste than the jarred, neon-red maraschino cherries you find at the supermarket. Try them in a Manhattan or a Shirley Temple -- or just use them to top an ice cream sundae.
The cherries will keep, covered and refrigerated, for about 2 weeks. Or you may can them for long-term storage: Pack the cherries and juice in hot, sterilized jars and seal according to the manufacturer's recommendations. Place in a water-bath canner and process for 20 minutes for pint jars.
Servings: 65 cherries
- 2 pints bing cherries, pitted
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 2 1/4 cups sugar
- Juice of 1 medium lemon
- 1 tablespoon almond extract
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Place the cherries in a shallow heatproof glass or ceramic bowl.
In a medium saucepan over high heat, combine 1 1/4 cups of the water and the salt. Bring to a boil, stirring until the salt has dissolved. 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. Set aside.
In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the sugar, lemon juice and remaining 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.
From Todd Thrasher of Restaurant Eve in Alexandria.
Tested by Michael Taylor.
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