We have choke cherry bushes in our yard! With A LOT of choke cherries growing on them. Still tons more, even after I made a small dent in them for this experiment!
Here’s the recipe I followed:
I thought it seemed like a TON of sugar, so I used a tiny bit less than that. But, still almost as much because I was worried that it wouldn’t thicken if I didn’t use enough.
First, we picked the cherries. I paid Aaron $1 to fill a bucket. Plus, the boys went and picked some every time they were bored. There are seriously still soooo many out there!
Then, I washed them, then put them in a pot and barely covered them with water, and set them to boil. Here’s where I made the mistake of leaving it on HIGH boiling, while we went out to pick more cherries.
I came back inside to this (all over the floor too.) and Derek screaming because he had woken up from his nap. Oops. Oh well, he was ok, and the mess cleaned right up.
So, then, I made a make-shift juicer out of pink tulle taped across my big bowl.
It worked like a charm. I only had to empty the juice once or twice out of the bowl and clean off the tulle with water. I got 5 cups of juice out of one bucket of chokecherries. It made 2 small jars and 1 1/2 big jars of syrup.
I canned the smaller jars in my pot as a boiling water bath for 12 minutes or so. The big one sealed on it’s own, and wouldn’t fit in my small pot, so I figured it was alright. The syrup is pretty yummy, especially with whipped cream on top. I liked it on brownies too- made it like chocolate covered cherry flavor.
Not too bad for my first canning experiment. AND, I am excited that I got a pressure canner at a yard sale for $1! It’s only a small one, but just big enough to do six or seven jars. I’ll try green beans this year, and peaches. Maybe with my tomatoes I’ll make spaghetti sauce and can that? Any suggestions and hints would be greatly appreciated!