Monday, October 21, 2013

Homemade Canned Gifts: Day One- Amaretto Cherry Sauce

Hey there! Last year I gave out some homemade canned items as Christmas gifts, with notes saying to return the jar for a refill the following year.  SO, with Christmas not too far away, I figured I'd better get started.

Last year's jams:  Chocolate Berry, Peach Vanilla, Vanilla Mint

Last year was the first year I had ever canned anything, and I was super impressed with the results!  This year, however, I've had a few problems with pectin.  Basically, it doesn't seem to want to firm up the jams.  No matter though, I just cooked the jams until they were thickened.  Problem solved!

First up:  Amaretto Cherry Sauce
(I say sauce, because as previously mentioned the pectin did not seem to firm up the mixture.  I could have opened up the jars and cooked the jam again, but I chose to keep it as a sauce instead of a jam.)

Recipe slightly adapted from Hezzi-D's Books and Cooks

32 oz. frozen cherries
6 T. classic pectin
3/4 c. Amaretto liqueur (I used Disaronno, the best, in my opinion)
3 T. lemon juice
3 1/2 c. sugar

  1. Prepare your canner and jars.
  2. Combine everything but sugar in a large saucepan over medium high heat.  Bring to a boil, stirring frequently.
  3. Gently mash cherries.  (You can chop your cherries, as in the original recipe, but I wanted some larger chunks.  I used a potato masher to smash 'em up a bit.  If you wanted a finer consistency though, you could even run them through a food processor, or use a stick blender.)
  4. Add the sugar and stir well until it has dissolved.  Return to a rolling boil and boil hard for 1 minute, stirring constantly.  Remove from heat.
  5. Skim the foam from the jam and ladle the hot jam into the prepared jars, leaving 1/4 inch of headspace.  Remove any air bubbles from the jars, and adjust headspace.
  6. Wipe rims of jars with clean rag and put on lid and rings, tightening to fingertip tight.  Process in a boiling water canner for 10 minutes.  Remove from the canner and let cool.  Store for up to a year.

Voila!  Cherry Amaretto jam Sauce! I used a muffin liner and fitted it over the top, then screwed the ring on, for a little festive merriment!

Check back tomorrow for Day Two:  Spicy Pickled Carrots

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