I have had cherry compote on at least three occasions in the last week or so. One was at a picnic at Ancient Hills winery catered by Basket Case Picnics who served it over a melt-in-the-middle mini chocolate cakes. The next was served over ice cream and the third was spooned over a frozen cheesecake at Blackhills Estate Winery (their restaurant is operated by the top notch catering company Joy Road Catering). This last one was more like sliced fresh cherries, perhaps marinated a little, but you get the picture. This means of course that it’s time to make some cherry compote at home. I thought I’d make two different batches with two types of cherries: the regular, more common dark Bing cherry variety and the light, yellow-ish pink Rainier cherries.
I have been buying cherries for some time now and enjoying them fresh as they are and even tossed into a salad here and there. Cherry jam is on my list but why not start with a simple compote to keep in the fridge and spoon over something as the need arises. I made waffles today and spooned the Rainier cherries over. It was delish. I’ll post the waffle recipe next.
Here are some ways you can use the cherry compote:
- as a sauce over a cake or dessert
- over breakfast cereal
- on top of ice cream
- on crepes
- on top of rice pudding
- on top of or alongside baked brie
- As a relish or sauce with savoury foods (use like cranberry sauce)
2 lb cherries
1/3 cup water
1/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon Grand Marnier or another fruit liqueur
Stem and pit the cherries. I use a cherry pitter to remove the pits. If you don’t have one and do not wish to invest in one then use a knife to cut around the pit and remove it.
Place the cherries in a pot with the sugar and water and bring to a boil.
Lower heat to a simmer and cook uncovered until the liquid reduces and thickens to a sauce consistency, about 20 minutes or so.
Add the Grand Marnier about a minute or two before the end of the cooking.
Remove from heat and let cool. The compote will thicken as it cools.
Place in jars and refrigerate.