Keep your nut and chocolate spreads – Nothing beats sweet cherries combined with almonds!
It’s funny how some years Mother Nature bestows us with an abundance of one crop or another, only to snatch it back the very next year and leave us with dregs.
That has been the story of our cherry tree experiment. After planting and nurturing, waiting for maturity, and gratefully harvesting a few cherries each year, we had a year of “Oh my goodness! I am drowning in cherries!”
That watershed year led to all kinds of new cherry concoctions in my recipe file, including this Cherry Almond Butter.
Everything Cherries Week continues here at Seed to Pantry as we celebrate fresh, sweet cherries and my “appointment” as a Washington State Fruit Commission Canbassador.
What is a Canbassador?
As a Canbassador my job is to make all kinds of wonderful preserved cherry items and then write about them. (Yeah, it’s a tough job, but I am up for it!)
You can find out lots more about our wonderful Washington stone fruits over at the SweetPreservation site. There are instructions for canning and freezing fruit, all kinds of ideas for throwing a “preservation party,” recipes, tips for choosing the best fruit at the grocery store, and professionally designed labels to download. You can even get a copy of the “Of course I canned” badge for your own blog.
So far this week I have shared:
Today it’s Cherry Almond Butter, two flavors that pair exceptionally well. In fact, almond extract actually comes from cherry pits!
- 3-4 lbs sweet cherries, pitted
- 3 cups sugar
- 1 tsp almond extract
- Place pitted cherries in a large pot and cook over low heat until soft, adding small amounts of water if necessary to prevent scorching.
- Puree cooked cherries in a blender or food processor or using an immersion blender.
- Measure puree.
- Return puree to pot - you should have about 6 cups of puree. Add sugar.
- Cook over medium-low heat, stirring often until mixture has thickened. Add almond extract, stirring to evenly distribute.
- Ladle into hot, clean jars leaving about ¼ inch head space. Top with the two-piece lids and rings, and process in a water bath for 10 minutes.
Keep Track of Your Canning Projects!
If you are busy putting up the harvest, don’t forget to keep track of your work with a Canning Journal. It will make your life easier and It will connect you to your grandchildren – and their grandchildren!
This wraps up our week of cherries, but I will still be busy:
- freezing cherries for smoothies
- making Brandied Cherries for Black Forest Cake
- and candying cherries for fruitcake
The season is just too short!
Full disclosure: This recipe was made with cherries I received from the Washington State Fruit Commission.