Craft Beer, Fine Wine, Artisan Spirits, and Mouthgasmic Food.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Bill Norris's Maraschino Cherries

This recipe is courtesy of Bill Norris at Fino Austin. He's behind the bar. I was so lazy when I received the recipe that I soaked maraschino cherries from in a jar in luxardo. Then I had one of Bill's cherries, and let's just say that it is well worth the time and effort to make these cherries. ^@$#%%@ is the only way I can describe it.


bulletHere's the link to the instructions I followed for canning the jars.
bulletI did 10 pounds of cherries and wound up with about 2.5 cups of extra liquid. I used that extra liquid to maraschino-ize 4 lbs of peaches using the same instructions. In the end, I had about 7 quart jars of cherries and 2 quart jars of peaches.
bulletLet the jars cool completely before removing from water. One of the jars slid out of the tongs I was using (I couldn't find silicone waterproof mitts), and it splashed into the water leaving me with 1st degree burns.
bulletI bought a cherry pitter that does 4 cherries at a time from Bed, Bath, and Beyond (14.99). Best tool ever! It was kind of fun too.
bulletThese cherries are very boozy. Not for kids. They are strong.

From Bill:

The only sticking point here is going to be finding the Luxardo Maraschino. There's not a whole lot in Austin at the moment--Spec's has some, reportedly. Don't, whatever you do, use the Stock brand. It is a vile, horrible thing. There's another one out there on occasion, the name of which escapes me, and it's ok, but Luxardo is the gold standard (

Per 1 pound sweet cherries, pitted
bullet1/2 C sugar
bullet1/2 C water
bullet2 t lemon juice
bullet1 cinnamon stick
bulletPinch of freshly grated nutmeg
bullet1/2 C of Luxardo maraschino liquor and 1/2 cup brandy (cheap is fine, Jacques Cardin works at about $9-$10 a bottle)
  1. Wash and pit the cherries.
  2. In a saucepan, combine all ingredients except the cherries and booze and bring to a rolling boil.
  3. When the liquid begins to boil, reduce the heat to medium.
  4. Add the cherries and simmer for 5–7 minutes.
  5. Remove from heat, add the liqueur, and let cool.
  6. Using mason jars, can as you would preserves

Cherries loaded in the pitter.

Smashy, smashy!

Taking the cherries out.

Oh......... the pits!

Cooking the cherries.

Into the jars.


Peaches on the left, cherries on the right.


  1. Those are beautiful, Jennie! Have you cracked one open yet?

  2. dirty dirty dirty...

    Quite an interesting machine you got there though. I have to admit it looks really fun.

  3. Amazing! These will be my new Christmas gifts to people! THANKS!

  4. Thanks for this recipe! I made 4 jars of these last month and just finished the first one. They're good, but I didn't realize I was supposed to remove the cinnamon sticks before sealing them up, so my batch tastes like cinnamon. Looking forward to trying again, especially if I can get sour or marasca cherries!

  5. Oops! I left the cinnamon sticks in the batch I made with peaches! I reuse the liquid. Do you?

  6. Is it imperative to actually can these or will they keep in the fridge?

    1. I keep them in the fridge after opening the jar. I supposed you don't have to can them at all if you store them in the fridge.