Cherries are rich in antioxidants that can have a healing impact on the body. Previous studies have shown that when participants consumed cherries on a daily basis for an extended period of time, certain markers for inflammation and muscle and joint tension were reduced.
Fresh cherries are available in abundance into late summer, in most parts of the United States. This recipe for cherry syrup is a way of preserving their flavor – and powerful healing properties – throughout the year. The syrup requires only three ingredients to make and will come together on your stovetop in a matter of minutes. Pair it with club soda for a refreshingly tart spritzer or simply reach for a spoonful any time pain strikes.
Homemade Cherry Syrup
- 1 pound fresh cherries with the stems removed
- ¼ cup honey
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Place the cherries and honey in a saucepan, set over medium heat. Stir to coat the cherries with the honey, and with the back of a fork, or a potato masher, begin pressing on the cherries to extract their juice. Continue to do so as the cherries warm up (the warmer they get, the easier they’ll be to mash!). Bring the mixture to a simmer, and continue to cook for approximately 10-15 minutes until the cherries start to break down.
- Remove from the heat and strain the mixture through a fine mesh sieve, into a medium-size bowl. Press down on the solids, making sure you get all of the juice out. Discard the pits and cherry remnants (or remove the pits and use the cherries in a smoothie!). Store the syrup in an airtight container, in the refrigerator, for up to two weeks.
What’s your favorite way to enjoy cherries?