The author and cook, Heather

Candied Amarena Cherries

Drinking French

These cherries are simple to make, but it does take some time and careful attention. It might actually be easier to make this in a double (or triple) batch, because my candy thermometer doesn't work very well in small amounts of liquid. I believe these are mostly used as a garnish, on either a drink or a decadent chocolate dessert.

I really enjoy a cherry in my old fashioned, so we've been using these since we made them. They hold up pretty well in the drink, and still have a bit of a bite at the end, but mine did fall apart a bit more than I'd like. They didn't start out entirely whole, though.

If you try it, let me know how you use them!

I found this recipe here:

Serving Size1/8 recipe, way more than you'd likely use at once!
Carbohydrates21g (0g fiber, 21g sugar)


[00:00]: [Music]
[00:05]: hello and welcome to cooking the books
[00:07]: with heather
[00:08]: today we are going to be making candied
[00:11]: amerina cherries from david leibovitz's
[00:14]: drinking french and i'm really excited
[00:16]: about these because these are supposed
[00:17]: to be
[00:17]: like the italian uh candy cherries
[00:21]: that we use in our drinks that i really
[00:24]: love but that are
[00:25]: very expensive um so i think they're the
[00:28]: luxardo cherries
[00:30]: uh i think they're like 18 for a little
[00:33]: jar of them and these are much cheaper
[00:35]: um you will need
[00:38]: jarred sour cherries in a
[00:42]: syrup so you want it to have you know
[00:44]: some sugar in it
[00:45]: but they are sour cherries i found these
[00:48]: at wegmans he says most well-stocked
[00:52]: grocery stores would have it that
[00:54]: that stock sort of um more european
[00:56]: ingredients
[00:58]: and trader joe's carries also jarred
[01:01]: sour cherries so
[01:05]: hopefully you'll be able to find those
[01:06]: if you want them so i've measured them
[01:08]: you want the cherries and the syrup here
[01:13]: and i'm just going to put these in a pot
[01:16]: that is uh deeper than it is wide
[01:22]: and we're going to add some sugar
[01:25]: because we're going to candy these
[01:27]: obviously and i
[01:29]: am going to get we're not going to stir
[01:30]: this
[01:33]: we're not going to stir this very much
[01:34]: but i'm just going to stir
[01:36]: the sugar into it at this point
[01:39]: and really these are the all of the
[01:41]: ingredients
[01:43]: and uh you're just going to
[01:48]: boil this until it hits about 225
[01:51]: degrees
[01:52]: uh fahrenheit or 107 degrees celsius so
[01:57]: this is a candy thermometer if you don't
[01:58]: have one
[01:60]: um i would use my meat thermometer and
[02:03]: just check it occasionally
[02:05]: um what else does he say just sort of
[02:08]: you want them to be syrupy but not
[02:09]: caramelized
[02:10]: um deep
[02:14]: deep dark red and slightly shriveled so
[02:18]: i'm going to put my you want this to be
[02:22]: in is that as far going as it goes
[02:26]: let's see
[02:30]: oh that's too far so it's really hard
[02:34]: with not much uh of the liquid because
[02:37]: so you'll have to sort of
[02:39]: make sure you twirl and and swirl it
[02:42]: and and tilt it to make sure you're
[02:44]: getting a good reading when it gets
[02:46]: closer to that but right now we're just
[02:48]: going to
[02:49]: try to boil it
[02:52]: so i'm going to have it on sort of a
[02:53]: medium-high heat we're going to bring it
[02:55]: up to a boil
[02:56]: and then we're going to drop it down
[02:58]: lower so it's sort of just at a boil
[03:01]: until it hits that temperature yeah just
[03:03]: a low boil and we're gonna cook it until
[03:05]: it hits the right temperature
[03:07]: uh and we'll let you know how long that
[03:08]: takes when we're done
[03:11]: uh but we're gonna bring it up to a boil
[03:12]: right now
[03:15]: we're just gonna wait for that so we're
[03:18]: up to a really good boil now i'm gonna
[03:20]: drop it down
[03:20]: so we sort of have it at uh
[03:24]: just a low boil
[03:29]: and my candy thermometer
[03:34]: has a few little breaks in the in the
[03:37]: part that measures the the red part that
[03:41]: goes up to measure the temperature and
[03:42]: so i'm not entirely sure
[03:45]: where we're at with the temperature
[03:48]: because
[03:50]: so i'm gonna get uh my meat thermometer
[03:52]: and
[03:58]: [Music]
[03:59]: um
[04:02]: just kind of i'm just going to kind of
[04:03]: verify where we are right this minute
[04:05]: with it
[04:08]: and yeah we're we're already at like
[04:11]: 2 12.
[04:15]: so which is
[04:20]: about where the top line
[04:24]: is mostly so
[04:27]: we're just gonna let this go maybe this
[04:29]: won't take that long i kind of expected
[04:30]: it um
[04:31]: like when you make fudge or other sort
[04:32]: of candies like this that boils
[04:34]: sometimes it takes
[04:36]: that last few degrees kind of take a
[04:38]: long time
[04:40]: but uh maybe this won't take quite so
[04:41]: long
[04:43]: [Music]
[04:45]: at this point it's been more than 30
[04:46]: minutes
[04:48]: like 35
[04:52]: ish minutes and my candy thermometer is
[04:55]: almost useless because there's not
[04:57]: enough liquid
[04:58]: to actually reach the bulb to show me
[05:02]: what the temperature is and with my
[05:04]: induction cooktop
[05:06]: when i sort of tilt the pan enough for
[05:08]: it to
[05:09]: tell me the temperature um
[05:12]: it cools down a bit
[05:16]: my stove doesn't continue to work unlike
[05:18]: the gas one would
[05:19]: so it kind of loses heat for a bit
[05:22]: anyway
[05:23]: 30 minutes we're only about 115 ish
[05:27]: so but the cherries are definitely
[05:30]: looking
[05:31]: darker than they were and starting to
[05:33]: look a little bit shriveled so
[05:39]: and this one now says we're at 220 so we
[05:42]: might be
[05:44]: getting there
[05:49]: so i do recommend
[05:52]: having the other kind of thermometer if
[05:54]: you don't have a really tiny pot for
[05:56]: this
[05:58]: or you make a double batch
[06:01]: double batch would be great but then i
[06:04]: need a larger
[06:05]: container okay
[06:08]: it is now about
[06:11]: 40 minutes since we started boiling this
[06:14]: and you can see that it's starting to
[06:16]: get a little bit
[06:17]: foamy and the the bubbles are sort of
[06:20]: smaller
[06:21]: uh and i think if i tilt it i may be
[06:24]: able to tell on this thermometer but the
[06:27]: other thermometer says
[06:28]: we are right about where we want to be
[06:30]: at 225 degrees
[06:39]: this one's not really telling me uh
[06:42]: but you can see that the liquid looks
[06:44]: really dark
[06:45]: the cherries look really dark and
[06:48]: uh much darker than they were
[06:52]: and they're starting to look tripled so
[06:54]: we're gonna call these done
[06:56]: and transfer them into this clean jar
[06:58]: and we're gonna let them
[06:60]: cool on the counter until they're barely
[07:02]: warm and then we're going to just store
[07:04]: them in the refrigerator
[07:05]: he says they'll last for up to a year
[07:09]: in the refrigerator so i'm sure we'll
[07:12]: use them before then
[07:13]: and uh in just a bit we will we'll make
[07:16]: a drink we'll use them in the drink
[07:18]: we'll taste them we'll let you know what
[07:20]: we think if they're a good replacement
[07:22]: for the
[07:22]: other candied italian cherries
[07:33]: on this episode of cooking the books
[07:34]: with heather you watched me make
[07:36]: candied amarina cherries from david
[07:39]: leibovitz's drinking french book
[07:42]: and i love a cherry in my cocktail i
[07:46]: don't know what
[07:46]: else we're going to use those for but we
[07:48]: started using these in our cocktails
[07:51]: you see i have an old-fashioned with
[07:52]: just one of the cherries here in the
[07:54]: bottom
[07:55]: i love having a little bit of cherry at
[07:57]: the end of the drink
[07:58]: i just like it
[08:02]: so i felt like these were really easy to
[08:05]: make if you can find the sour
[08:06]: the jarred sour cherries um it's just
[08:10]: those
[08:10]: and sugar and then thyme they took quite
[08:13]: a while to make
[08:15]: the syrup is really thick on mine i
[08:18]: don't think i
[08:18]: overcooked them i did keep testing the
[08:22]: temperature and i got right about
[08:24]: exactly what he says to get to is 225
[08:28]: but i do find them to be a little bit
[08:30]: the syrup's a little bit thick
[08:32]: definitely thicker than other um
[08:35]: cocktail cherries
[08:36]: but also the cherries themselves sort of
[08:40]: broke down a little bit more so you
[08:42]: don't get quite the bite that you get
[08:44]: from
[08:45]: either a luxardo or another maraschino
[08:48]: type cherry
[08:49]: but they're still delicious and i'm
[08:51]: looking forward to figuring out
[08:53]: something else to do with them besides
[08:55]: just enjoying them in my drinks
[08:56]: but if you enjoyed watching me make this
[08:59]: please give me a thumbs up
[09:00]: hit the subscribe button and come back
[09:02]: and watch me make something else
[09:03]: next week
[09:08]: you