Black Forest Preserve is a great accompaniment with cheese, drizzled as an ice cream sauce, between layers of cakes or to sandwich cookies. It’s a preseve with lots of fresh cherries and little chocolate to complement the fruity cherry flavor. This is Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte in a bottle minus the whipped cream.
Makes 1 and 1/4 pint
3 cups firmly packed fresh or frozen pitted, coarsely chopped sweet black or rainier cherries * DO NOT USE ALREADY PRESERVED/CANNED CHERRIES
3 cups Sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened Cocoa powder * Can use less than listed measurement. I prefer more chocolate, hence used this amount.
1/2 pouch (1.5 oz) liquid pectin * DO NOT USE REGULAR PECTIN. IT IS NOT INTERCHANGEABLE.
1 tbsp Lemon juice
1/2 tbsp Butter * To cut the foam (optional)
1 tsp Rum extract or your favorite liquor like Amaretto or Kirsch. I HATE artificial almond flavor. If you like it, feel free to use. (optional)
Choose fresh plump cherries. Wash and dry, pit and chop coarsely.
Prepare canning jar and lid. Keep the jar and lid in simmering water. Let it remain hot till it’s ready to be filled.
In a large deep pan, combine cherries and lemon juice.
Combine sugar and cocoa, stir well and set aside
Liquid pectin is not interchangeable with other pectin. Do not swap.
Stir in reserved cocoa and sugar mixture. Over high heat, stirring constantly bring to a full rolling boil that cannot be stirred down.
Cover the mixture with a splatter screen. Stir in pectin. Boil hard, stirring constantly for a min. Stir in flavoring. Add butter. Remove from heat and skim off foam.
Using a tong remove jar from simmering water.
Fill the cooked preserve with a ladle into the canning jar. Leave a head space of 1/4 inch. Remove any bubbles with a non-metallic spatula. Using a clean damp cloth, clean the jar rim. Center lids on the jar so that the sealing compound is in contact with the rim. Lower the bottle into the boiling water. Give a final boil for about 3-5 minute. Switch off heat. Leave the bottle in the water for 5 mins. Do not tilt or topple the bottle.
Wait for the ‘click’ sound or till the lid is sucked in due to the vaccum. That confirm the seal.
Store the preserve in a dark cool place for 1 year or so. Once open, refrigerate the preserve and use within 6 months.