This cherry bourbon compote is a sweet summer treat, perfect for topping ice cream and breakfast foods, like pancakes and waffles.
One of my favorite things about summer, especially summer in California, is the abundance of fresh and delicious fruit. Stonefruit are my particular favorites — peaches, plums, mangoes and, of course, cherries. Is there anything more summery than a basket of deep red cherries? I don’t think so!
And one of my favorite things to do with summer fruit is to turn it into a yummy compote to top rich vanilla ice cream. No one really wants to bake during the summer months, so having a mason jar of this chunky cherry bourbon compote in the fridge is perfect for topping vanilla ice cream. You can also can it and bring it to your friends and neighbors as a sweet summer housewarming gift. I’ve even designed a gift tag that you can print out and attach using ribbon or baker’s twine.
I picked up two pounds of ripe Delta Packing cherries from my local Raley’s grocery store. Raley’s produce section is amazing — they work closely with farmers to offer the best produce at the best prices. I’m telling you guys — these cherries were a bargain!
Some of my two pounds of Summer’s Best Cherries went to this cherry bourbon compote and I am enjoying the rest sitting out on our porch, watching my boys play in their new water table — the thermometer almost hit the century mark this week! While the calendar says we still have a few weeks, it’s clearly summer here.
If you’ve never pitted cherries before, my little secret is to use a pastry tip. Place the pastry tip on a no-slip cutting board. Place the indentation in the top of the cherry down on the pastry tip and the pit pushes right out through the bottom of the cherry. It’s a little messy, so make sure you’re wearing a dark shirt or something you don’t mind getting cherry juice on.
Once you’ve pitted your cherries, combine them with the granulated sugar, brown sugar, bourbon, and lemon zest in a heavy bottom pot and bring to a boil. At first it will be dry, but as the cherries start to release their juices, it will become a sauce. Simmer it down for about half an hour and let cool! The bourbon adds another dimension of flavor to the compote, as does the lemon zest. You can make it without either, but it’s better with both!
What are you favorite recipes with fresh cherries? Tell me in the comments!
This post is sponsored by Raley’s