Cherry syrup....

I have a cupboard full of jams and marmalades, but no sweet, fruity syrups. This originally was supposed to be yet another jam, but halfway through the making, I simply changed my mind and went for a syrup like consistency - what a brilliant idea that was! 

My cherry syrup turned out to be perfect for adding it to my morning porridge, plain or vanilla yogurt, stirring into a hot tea (looking forward to this especially during long, winter evenings), pouring over ice cream or pancakes, mixing it with water to make juicy drink for my girls or adding to an alcoholic beverage for adults...

The recipe is very simple and you literally need only two ingredients (or three if, like me, you want to add the lemon juice too). It's so versatile and yet another idea of putting the abundance of this year's cherries into a good use.

How to make it...

- cherries, pitted
- caster sugar: 3/4 of the total amount of your pitted cherries (for example - if you have 1 kg pitted cherries you'll need 750 g sugar)
- juice and zest of 1 lemon (optional)


- Put the cherries and lemon juice into a big, non-stick pot, cover with lid and simmer for about 20 minutes (until the cherries release their juice and become soft). 
- Add the sugar and stir until all the sugar dissolves. 
- Cover with lid again and simmer on a low heat for up to 1 hour, it should bubble just ever so slightly throughout that time. 
- Uncover and let it simmer for further 30 minutes, by that time it should thicken quite a bit. 
- Using a hand held liquidizer/blender, blend the cherries roughly to break up the skins and simmer again for about 30 more minutes. 
- Transfer the syrup, while still bubbling hot, into sterilized jars or bottles. 
- Secure the lids and let cool completely. 
- By the time the syrup cools down, the lids will be sucked in and your jars will seal naturally.


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