Earlier this week, Mud came home with a huge tub of Cherries which one of his work colleagues had given him as a thank you for the tomato plants and tub we’d given her. We love cherries in this household but even we were going to struggle to get through what turned out to be nearly 3lb (1.36kg) of the most gorgeous, tasty and juicy cherries we have ever tasted, although the Mudlets were happy to try.
So I had to come up with a plan and, following on from the success with my strawberry conserve a few weeks ago, I decided to have a go at Cherry Conserve.
So last night I de-stoned a lot of cherries until I had 550g of them, placed them in a bowl and then added 450g of sugar which I then thoroughly mixed into the cherries. The bowl was then covered with clingfilm and went into the fridge overnight.
This morning we had a family outing, taking in the delights of BAPP, Humberside Paint and Products and A&P Land Rover Supplies before finishing our magical mystery tour at Morrisons where we had to pick up supplies because Eldest Mudlet is coming for a ‘sleep over’ (as the younger Mudelts like to call it) tomorrow and Mud always feels a need to feed her up with lovely food stuffs. Not your typical family day out ….. unless that is you happen to be the family of a Land Rover Owner.
Anyway, by the time we got back, had unpacked the shopping, had lunch and I finally remembered the cherries, they had been fermenting in the sugar for over 12 hours. The next step was to put the mixture into a pan and heat it over a low heat until the sugar had melted. I then added two tablespoons of lemon juice and continued to boil the mixture until the mythical ‘setting point’ had been reached – I’m still not sure I’ve identified this properly but the last batch worked well so, fingers crossed.
I allowed the mixture to cool down for half an hour or so, as this apparently helps to ensure that the fruit pieces are evenly dispersed and don’t all rise to the top of the jars, sterilising the jars by pouring boiling water in to jars and lids and leaving them for 5 minutes, whilst waiting for the pan to cool.
Once cooled a little and the syrup had thickened slightly, I ladled the mixture into the jars before screwing the lids back on. This time there was enough to completely fill two 350g jars and these are now on the side cooling down before being placed into the fridge overnight. There are still some cherries left for eating but I’m quite sure the Mudelts will have dealt with these stragglers by the end of the weekend.
Of course the proof of the pudding (or conserve) will be at jar opening tomorrow when Mud and the Mudlets have some on their toast but the taste I had was very nice indeed, much better than the strawberry one in my opinion …… maybe I should hide it …… keep it just for me …. I’m sure they wouldn’t notice. Would they?