Cherry jam

My mother’s aunt has an amazing garden around her house with a beautiful Lebanese cherry tree , a fig tree and many peach and apricot trees to name a few of the beautiful things growing around their house.

She invited us (me, my mum and the kids)  to pick cherries a few days ago, the kids were super excited and couldn’t wait to go. The idea of climbing a tree or picking a fig or a cherry  right off the branch was a joy beyond words for them. They kept running back and forth with their treasured fruit picks showing me each and every one.

Their excitement was infectious and I got carried away and suggested that I would like to make some jam with those amazing cherries and photograph them for my blog. Mum sent me home with a big box of cherries after telling me numerous times that I was getting myself in trouble.  Ignorant me insisted that it will be fun and enjoyable.. clearly spending all that time in the sun has gone to my head.

When I got home and emptied the cherries into my sink to wash them, realisation hit me like a ton of bricks..what on earth am I going to do with all these cherries..we are talking about a small mountain of cherries here.

A couple of phone calls to my mum and a lot of deep breathing later I sorted out the cherries into two groups. The really ripe mountain and the firm mountain. The first was transformed into jam and part of the other made a delicious cherry and mango crumble.

If you are making jam that you plan to store for a long period of time you need to use a 1:1  fruit to sugar ratio. I on the other hand prefer my jam a little less sweet. I feel that all that sugar overwhelms the delicate fruit so I use a 2:1 ratio and keep my jam in the fridge (That is my mum’s way and I love it).

Mum also doesn’t peel nor stone the cherries, she mashes them up by hand and then when the jam starts to boil she uses a slotted spoon to remove the peel and seed. This is not only easier, she says they this gives the jam much more flavor and helps it set.

2 kilograms cherry

1 kilogram sugar

juice of 1 lemon

Wash your cherries well and drain them

In a pot place the cherries and the sugar and the lemon juice

squish the cherries to bring out the juices (this will reduce the cooking time)

I removed some of the peel and seeds before cooking because I was worried it might over flow

On medium heat, bring to a boil.

Once it starts to boil use the spoon to take out the seeds and peel

Lower the heat and keep it simmering untill it has reduced by 1/3 or 1/2 depending on how thick you like your jam.

Allow to cool to room temperature then fill into jars and store in your fridge and enjoy 🙂