Friday, June 25, 2010

Cerejas com Aguardente

Cerejas com Aguardente

With the World Cup on and my team about the hit the pitch against Brazil in a few minutes I wanted to give this month's preserves a little Portuguese nod. I wanted to make something that we could use as a dessert topping and in a cocktail. As the summer heats up I will be pulling out our Ice Cream maker and one of these will be the final topping on a tasty homemade sundae. I'm also really looking forward to using one of these in a Manhattan instead of one of those nasty nuclear red jarred supermarket Maraschino cherries.

Where I adapted this recipe was in the alcohol I used. Aguardente is popular Portuguese brandy that is made by using the spent grape must after wine making, very similar to an Italian grappa. I also added a touch of Amaretto to add an hint of almond flavor.

Cerejas com Aguardente
(adapted from the Bernardin Complete Book of Home Preserving)

approx 4 cups of Cherries
2 cups of Water
1 cup of Sugar
1 tbsp of Aguardente
1 tsp of Amaretto

This recipe yielded 2 - 500ml Jars

1 - In a saucepan, over medium heat combine sugar and water. Bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve sugar. Add the cherries, stirring constantly, and return to a boil. Reduce heat and boil gently for 5 minutes.

2 - Using a slotted spoon, pack cherries into prepared hot jars to within about 1/2" of top of jar and add the Aguardente and Amaretto. Ladle hot syrup into the jars to cover the cherries leaving 1/2" of headspace. Remove any air bubbles, adding more syrup if needed. Seal with prepared lids and hot water process for 15 minutes.