Brandied cherries are surprisingly simple to make and the perfect way to top off a holiday meal! These sweet, chewy cherries are swimming in a thick, syrupy, brandy glaze. Really, how could you go wrong? Serve them in a martini glass on their own, drizzled over the top of a decadent chocolate gelato, or top a cheesecake or chocolate flourless cake. They even work well as a sauce on pork chops or chicken. I had to make an extra batch because I tossed the first batch into my wilted spinach salads at lunch every day this week! Note: Cherries come into season during the summer and if you plan ahead, I would absolutely make them when they are in season. If you're like me, and Christmas is a week away and you can't imagine the holiday slipping by without this heavenly treat, then scour your local markets. Albeit, pricey, I found these Bing cherries imported from Chile and they will do the trick! Note: These will keep in the refrigerator for up to six months and will only taste better the longer they sit. If you prefer to make them shelf stable and keep them for longer, please reference a reliable source (i.e. National Center for Home Food Preservation) for safe canning practices.
- 2 lbs sweet cherries (Bing, Ranier)
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 1/4 cup brandy
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 cloves
- 1 tspn vanilla
- Wash and pit the cherries.
- Combine cherries, sugar, cinnamon, cloves, vanilla, and ½ cup water in a medium pot. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat.
- Reduce heat to a simmer and cook uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the cherries soften and the syrup thickens, about 20–25 minutes.
- Let cool slightly, then stir in brandy.
- Transfer cherries and syrup to a jar or airtight container and chill.