Amarena Cherries

Does anyone have a recipe for the syrup used to preserve Amarena cherries? Google has failed me.



beyondcelery May 30, 2013
Nice, I haven't seen Montmorency cherries. I'll keep a lookout for them!
beyondcelery May 30, 2013
@Midge: If memory serves, my best batch of preserved cherries came from first cutting the cherries in half, pitting, and dusting them with sugar overnight. It was about 1 cup cut cherries and maybe 1/4 cup sugar. Then I took all the liquid from that the next day, mixed with about 1/4 cup campari, 1/2 cup sugar, and 1 cup water. I cooked the syrup down till it was slightly thickened, then canned the cherries in a water bath. I got the cherries from the farmer's market and I know they were a little on the sour side, but not like Amarena. Morello maybe? Anyway, they turned out great, even if I didn't keep track of my exact ratios.
Midge May 30, 2013
Thanks so much beyondcelery! Look forward to trying your method when cherries are in season.
Midge May 30, 2013
I've only used the very tart Montmorency, which work great.
amysarah May 29, 2013
Not amarena cherries, but in the same vein - sour cherries are big in Hungarian cooking. I'm pretty sure the syrup was basic simple syrup. Most often they were used for sour cherry soup in the summer, but I also remember jars of them in kirsch. Also, my great grandmother would use them to make a loose jam, and stir a spoon of it into hot tea for us. Delicious and when you finished your tea, you got to eat the cherries left in the bottom of the glass (never a cup, always a small glass.)
Cami's K. May 29, 2013
The secret ingredient is the cherries themselves. True Amarena cherries are from Italy, usually grown in Modena and Bologna (Similar to how true champagne can only come from the champagne region of France, otherwise it is just sparkling wine.). Italians preserve these small sour cherries in sugar. I'm going to try using Bing cherries and see what happens... I can probably only call them preserved cherries then, lol!
Rm S. November 6, 2012
Fresh red, sour cherries, lots of sugar, vinegar, lemon juice or balsamic, vanilla. Be sure to leave in some pits for the special flavor. Marinate for at least a month.
beyondcelery July 28, 2011
Thanks for the idea, Paula G.! I ended up making a light syrup with vanilla sugar, water, and campari. When I get more cherries, I'll probably try a few variations on this. (I love to can.)
Midge May 30, 2013
I've been experimenting with preserving sour cherries in vanilla/simple syrup over the last few summers. I'm curious about your proportions and intrigued by the campari--yum-- how much do you add?
Paula G. July 28, 2011
I preserved the cherries in a bottle of vodka with caster sugar. By Christmas you have a magic liqueur. Also put cherries in a white wine vinegar for a great flavourd vinegar.
beyondcelery July 21, 2011
Thanks, pierino. I think you're probably right.
pierino July 21, 2011
Can't say for sure but I'm guessing it's just simple syrup, sugar and water, in which the cherries have macerated for a long time, releasing their flavor into the syrup. But amarena are a variety of bitter cherries, kind of unique to Italy.
beyondcelery July 20, 2011
Indeed we do! Yes; I was beginning to get the sense this is a very well-kept secret recipe. I was hoping someone had managed to make up something similar. But apparently I'm going to have to do that myself. Yum. I like the amaretto suggestion.
Joan January 24, 2020
This is what popped up for me when I googled amarena cherry syrup.
Tako M. May 26, 2020
Does it worked ??
biondanonima August 28, 2022
I tried this with Morello cherries this summer - the cherries effectively dried in the jar as the sugar and heat leached out their juices. The end product is fairly similar to Fabbri or Luxardo Amarena cherries, just a bit drier. I would probably reduce the curing time to 30 days next time so that the cherries are a bit juicier, but still, a successful experiment overall. I pitted them and canned them in the resulting syrup (reduced slightly to thicken).
fo July 20, 2011
lol. ohhhh! well, now we know what to do with our leftover amarena syrup ;)

i think the recipe is a secret, from what i understand anyway. hmmm, maybe try making a syrup with sugar, amaretto and lemon juice.....
beyondcelery July 20, 2011
Thanks, frankieolives! I actually meant to MAKE the syrup myself. I have some Rainier cherries I want to try preserving in the syrup used for Amarenas. But I can't find a recipe for what's in the syrup.
Daniela N. January 8, 2016
Hi, did you ever find a recipe for the syrup? Stumbled on your original post and I'm struggling just as much as you did 4 years back to find a recipe online!
beyondcelery January 9, 2016
Nope. But I made some decent cherries using a simple syrup and a slash of bourbon (or was it rum?). Anyway, it's really the cherries themselves that make the flavor distinct. :)
fo July 20, 2011
ooohhh, here're more:

brush it in between the layers of your yellowcake, before you spread on your butter cream, or if you're doing a chocolate cake, brush it between layers and call it black forest.

whip into whipped cream for desserts, or tint your creme anglaise

brush it onto the steak that you are about to submit to this weeks contest during grilling...
fo July 20, 2011
i would:
1) happily pour it over vanilla or coconut gelato or ice cream
2)use it as the grenadine in a shirley temple or in a manhattan, depending on your age ; )
3) toss your stone fruit in it before you use it in a galette/tart for a je ne sais quoi?
4) pour a little in a glass, top with ice and fizzy water and call it an amarena soda
5) use it in your go-to balsamic vinaigrette, just a dash, for depth
6) glaze a squab during the final few minutes of roasting

the possibilities are endless!
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