1 pound fresh cherries, pitted (about 2 cups)
½ cup sugar
1 tablespoon corn starch
½ cup orange juice
1 teaspoon orange zest
¼ cup brandy
Vanilla ice cream
Mix one to two tablespoons of the orange juice with the corn starch until well blended to prevent lumps from forming when added to the cherry mixture. Set aside.
In a sauté pan, cook the orange juice and sugar over medium heat until the sugar is dissolved. Add the corn starch mixture and cook for 2 minutes over medium heat, stirring often. Add the cherries and cook for 2 to 3 minutes until the cherries have softened and the liquid has achieved a sauce-like consistency and coats the back of a spoon.
Add the zest at the end to keep it fresh and stir until incorporated. Remove the pan from the burner before adding the brandy. To flambé, use a long-handled lighter to light the mixture on fire, which should last about 10 to 15 seconds. When the flame has died, return pan to burner and cook for one more minute. To serve, spoon generously over vanilla ice cream and enjoy!
Without flambé: Remove the pan from the burner and add the brandy. Return pan to burner and continue cooking for 3 minutes to cook off the alcohol content.
- Use a cherry-pitting gadget to easily remove the pits from fresh cherries so that they remain intact.
- Use Kirschwasser, other cherry brandies, regular brandy or rum for the alcohol.
- If not using alcohol, add another flavoring to the dish like a teaspoon of vanilla, or a tablespoon of Grenadine.