Monday, July 30, 2012

Make Your Own Cherry Molasses

   We're having a pretty amazing cherry season here in Sonoma.  Cherries are plentiful and right now pretty cheap. Last summer two storms ruined the cherry crop, the fruit rotted on the trees and prices soared. This year if you are a cherry lover, you're in luck. Taking advantage of this cherry boon, I decided to spring for a tool that I always thought I didn't need, a cherry pitter. Boy was I wrong. I usually have to learn my lesson that way. I like to cook old school and I have to be convinced of the usefulness of modern conveniences. If God meant us to have cherry pitters, then why did he give us fingers... and paring knives? Several boxes of band aids and scars later, (I was never gonna be a hand model anyway) I finally gave in an bought an OXO Cherry Pitter at The Sign of The Bear our local kitchen and cooking store.

   Right around the time I bought my own pitter, the people at  OXO sent me another  pitter, which I'm offering as a giveaway.  Once I'd made my first batch of 5 Minute Cherry Chocolate Ice Cream  this little tool became my new best friend. I bought more cherries and then tried to figure out what to do with them that would be new, different for me, and involved pitting. Finally, I came up with something. I'd make Cherry Molasses.

  A couple of years ago I started making my own pomegranate molasses, and I've been making simple syrups this Summer, so it seemed an obvious connection. In fact, making cherry molasses is basically the same traditional recipe used in making any fruit syrup. Cherry molasses is also pretty easy to make as long as you can get rid of the pits easily. In fact you can have a bottle of cherry molasses sitting on your shelf in less than an hour, it's that fast. It was so easy in fact that I am entering it in the OXO Cherry Recipe Contest. Find out more about the contest Here

Cherry Molasses

Here's What You Need:

4 cups of washed,pitted, fresh cherries
1 cup of water
3/4 cup of sugar
1 lemon

Here's What To Do:

Rinse and pit the cherries.
Cut the pitted cherries in half.

Put the pitted halved cherries in a pot along with 1 cup of water.
Bring everything to a boil.

When the cherries are boiling, add in the juice of 1 lemon.
Mash down the cherries to a pulp.

Cook the cherries down on a medium bubbling heat until they've turned into a mushy mass.

There's Alan mirrored in my ladle, taking a picture.
Pour the mushy boiling cherry mixture carefully through a strainer into a bowl.

Press down and allow the liquid part of the cooked cherries to pass through the strainer.
Pour the strained cherry mixture back into the pot and add 3/4 cup of sugar.
Bring things to a boil again.
Boil the sweetened cherries for about 1 minute. The thickened cherry mixture should start to coat the spoon. When that happens, you've got molasses baby.
Take it off the heat and let it cool a bit then pour it into a sterilized bottle.

If you're planning on keeping this for a while, pour it into a sealed sterilized canning jar and  process it as you would any jam or jelly, otherwise store it in the fridge. The next task its to figure out how best to use this cherry molasses. Of course it can be an ice cream topping, pancake syrup or ingredient  in a marinade. I'm thinking however of whipping up a bit of barbecue sauce with it.

    If you'd like to do a little pitting of your own, I'm giving away a cherry pitter to someone who'd like to do some pitting and lives in the USA (for shipping purposes). PS: This pitter works excellently on olives too. Remember tapanade season is coming. Just leave a comment  and let me know what you'd make with your very own pitter. I'll be choosing a winner via on Aug 1st.

   Follow along on Twitter @kathygori


  1. I would pit cherries and make booze out of the pits. I would make booze with the other parts too.

    1. I have definitely gotten the idea you are a bootlegger at heart! ; )

  2. Lucky to have a bountiful cherry season! Wonderful way to use them.

  3. I like Janice's idea! However I think the first thing I'd make would be this recipe for cherry molasses!

  4. Oh this would have come in handy for all the cherries I pitted for desserts! I just recently made cherry chocolate ice cream and cherry walnut bread!Next on my list to make are cherry turnovers!

  5. I always find similar in your blog. Illustration of your recipe I really liked and it make your recipe too easy to prepare. Which is great.

  6. I would love to have a cherry pitter for making my favorite fruit salad: cherries, raspberries, blueberries, and plums (really, any berry or stone fruit that you like will work). Make a light and creamy topping by blending ricotta cheese, orange juice, orange zest, and a splash of orange liqueur. That, plus a drizzle of cherry molasses on top would be delicious!

  7. This is absolutely wonderful, have tried pomegranate molasses, but cherry m. sounds much fun.

  8. This looks and sounds wonderful! I love my new OXO cherry pitter and can't believe I've went this long without owning one!

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    You know what is the TARONCELLO? alone in my blog you will find the answer - ...
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  10. That sounds great! What a good idea. :)



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