Once you try some spiced, pickled cherries, you'll see how their bright flavor works to perk up savory preparations of all sorts. Toss them into salads and into sandwiches for a burst of tart cherry-iness. Having them around to serve with pâté or add to platters of charcuterie is reason enough to set aside an hour or so to make these pickled devils.
For a few variations on the theme of these pickles, scroll to the end of the recipe. If you'd prefer something sweeter, try making some brandied cherries instead.
- 1 pound cherries (use sweet cherries)
- 1 cup cider vinegar
- 1 cup water
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons black peppercorns
- 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
- Optional: 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- Rinse the cherries and pat them dry.
- In a small saucepan, bring the vinegar, water, sugar, peppercorns, coriander seeds, and red pepper flakes to a boil. Reduce the heat to maintain a gentle simmer and cook for about 10 minutes.
- Pit the cherries. If you have a cherry pitter, use it! If not, use an unbent paperclip, manicure orange stick, small tweezers, or the end of a small skewer to poke it and "pop" out the pit. Whichever way you pit them, work over a bowl to catch any cherry juice.
- Put the pitted cherries and their juice in even amounts in two 1-pint jars or one 1-quart jar.
- Pour even amounts of the vinegar mixture into the jars to cover the cherries. Screw on the lids and let the jars sit to cool to room temperature.
- Chill for at least a week before using and up to 2 months; the pickles will still be edible after 2 months, but I find their texture starts to get a tad on the mushy side for my taste.
Note: These are "refrigerator" pickles and haven't been hot-water processed or canned, so they are not shelf-stable and need to be kept in the fridge.
- Add a few cloves, a cinnamon stick, and a pod or two of cardamom to give these pickles a warm spice note.
- Tuck in a sprig of fresh rosemary to each jar for pickles with a strong herbal scent.
- Leave out the spices entirely for even simpler cherry pickles—just boil the vinegar, water, and sugar together.
|Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)|
|Total Fat||29 g|
|Saturated Fat||2 g|
|Unsaturated Fat||19 g|
|Dietary Fiber||7 g|