photo by Moriah A.
- Ready In:
4 1/2 pints
- 3 cups chokecherry juice (see first step)
- 6 1⁄2 cups sugar
- 1⁄4 teaspoon almond extract
- Wash chokecherries, place in a large kettle, barely cover with water and cook, covered, for about 30 minutes till the cherries are soft.
- Mash gently and strain the chokecherry juice through a sieve or cheesecloth.
- Pour 3 cups juice into a large kettle; stir in the sugar.
- Cook on high, stirring constantly.
- Boil hard for 1 minute.
- Remove from heat and skim foam.
- Add extract if using (almond extract gives a stronger cherry taste).
- To can: Pour hot syrup into sterilized hot jars to within 1/8th inch from top.
Questions & Replies
Excellent recipe! However, being a food scientist, I can't leave anything alone! I discovered that increasing the boil (hard boil which can't be stirred down) to 3 - 5 minutes produces a spoonable, not pourable product, but which beautifully melts out across a hot pancake and resists soaking in. My first batch crystallized over time - as honey does. You can inhibit crytallization by including 1/3 C corn syrup in the boil. If you want extra-fancy, try adding 1/8 C raspberry juice and an extra 1/8 C sugar. Be sure to add the almond extract!
My family has passed this on for generations, but we only use 3/4 cup of sugar per cup of chokecherry juice and last year I cut it back to 1/2 cup. We simmer for 10 minutes. And then process. Once the syrup is opened we freeze it after as it will not keep in fridge. We pour over pancakes followed by a small splash of cream and enjoy! It's not a gaggy sweet syrup and nothing like the real flavour of a refreshing chokecherry syrup...no extra flavourings needed.