Angel on one shoulder, devil on t’other

Angel on one shoulder, devil on tother Sour Cherry Preserving Recipes Cherry

If you are going to preserve cherries, there is one guideline to check before you start: you must love them.  I don`t mean like a lot.  I mean love, adore and borderline obsess.  They are simply far too much work for fondness – these take commitment.

Angel on one shoulder, devil on tother Sour Cherry Preserving Recipes Cherry

Each cherry has to be individually stemmed and each fruit pitted (explained in full tomorrow).  This means that you will need to hand process every cherry at least twice before it makes it to the jarring stage.  They are a tone of work – and one of my favorite things in the world to eat.

We took 3 kinds of sweet cherries and followed guidelines for a 30% simple syrup (sugar and water) as recommended by The Joy of Cooking.  Bing, Rainier and yellow sweet cherries filled our jars – and will fill our bellies in the fall and winter.

Now for the kicker – this is half the cherries we have done this year.  The others were hand-picked sour cherries done in grain alcohol (and simple syrup).  Both batches were done in 1-cup jars and will be served together – sweet and sour, water and booze, ying and yang.  This will be our Naughty or Nice dish in December and our Devil or Angel come Valentines.  Two separate batches which will form a single serving.

We won`t know how this will work for a few months; the wait is going to be a difficult one!


  1. Lots of work is right! I had a bumper crop of sweet cherries 2 years ago. Friends were taking away buckets of fruit, and I was still left with an amazing harvest to preserve.
    I found the pitting to be the most work. After finishing, my kitchen resembled a CSI crime scene with what looked like blood splatters everywhere, including the ceiling.
    I packaged them as ‘cup’ size in plastic bags and froze them. Even now, a couple of years later, I have some left and they are still great for pies, baking, and milkshakes.
    It was worth the effort, since the next year I only harvested one cherry after heavy frosts came after the blossoms.

    • I love the comment re CSI – so, so right. The pitter we used helped that but it was inevitable. It’s great to have a reserve like you did – feels like cheating! Nothing better than cherry pie either… :)


  1. [...] Angel on one shoulder, devil on t’other We canned about 700 jars last year and made more than 50 different types of waterbath preserves.  A trick to extending your efforts is to alter a few ingredients and turn a single batch into different things at the same time.  We did two different types of cherries last year (one in simple syrup and another in alcohol) and eat them separate or mix them together for a third different taste.  Mixing and matching is a lot of fun when you work with fruit. [...]

  2. [...] boozy sour cherries from last year are a very adult prize hidden at the bottom of a beverage.  Our sweet cherries in [...]

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