I was able to purchase 18 lbs of unsprayed RIPE black cherries for less than $2.00/lb. They are exquisite! I was planning on canning some and cooking with some and eating some fresh. Then I came across this recipe for WHOLE (meaning with the stems and pits intact) pickled cherries...and I was intrigued. We like sweet pickles in our household. I like eliminating unnecessary steps. It is the perfect combination in my mind.
So inspired by the previous recipe and the flavoring of this pickled cherry recipe, and this other pickled cherries recipe, I set out to make my own.
I currently have 6 liters put up. I washed each batch of cherries in a vinegar /water solution first. I filled each jar with a handful of cherries at a time, checking for too soft or damaged fruit. 2 cherries got rejected. One was disposed of in my tummy and one was thrown out to the chickens.
I chose to make one 2 liter batch sweet and spicy with 3 whole dried jalapeños and about 2:1 vinegar to sugar with 2 TBS sea salt. The other 2 batches are 1 star anise each, some whole cloves and peppercorn with approximately 3:2 vinegar to sugar. One is a little heavier on the cloves and peppercorns than the other. I used raw ACV for the vinegar and will just keep them in the back of the fridge. There's 2 TBS of sea salt in each jar plus 1 tsp of cream of tartar for extra potassium.
Will have to get back to you on how they turn out...but I have high hopes. Worse comes to worse, I can make a chutney out of them or something.
Update Day 3: These have been sitting on the counter for about 3 days. I hadn't gotten around to making space in the fridge for them yet. I couldn't resist a nibble....
A little softer than I was expecting...but I think that's because they weren't cold. Tasted good....not quite the same as a fresh cherry but not a vinegar bomb either. I like it so far...especially if they keep long term. There's quite a bit of the undissolved sugar at the bottom on the jar, I should probably just use less next time but I was afraid of making them too sour.
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