Traditional Greek spoon sweet made with fresh cherries. A delightful small sweet to offer guests. Serve with cold water. This is one of the most colourful of the spoon sweets (preserves served by the teaspoonful), turning a delightful clear red when finished. Use a cherry pitter, cherry stoner, or large sewing needle to push out the pits.
- 1.25 kg fresh firm cherries (slightly underripe)
- 6¼ cups sugar
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)
- Wash the cherries well. Remove stems and pits carefully, leaving the fruit intact, and set aside to drain in a colander. Combine water and sugar in a pot and bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring initially to prevent from sticking.
- When the syrup thickens to the consistency of maple syrup, remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.
- Add cherries to the syrup and bring to a boil over high heat. With a slotted spoon, skim off foam as it rises to the surface, then add the lemon juice.
- Allow to boil for another minute (add vanilla if desired), and remove from heat. When thoroughly cooled, store in airtight glass jars.