Freezing-Sour Cherries

  • By Stephanie
  • July 5, 2013
  • Comments Off on Freezing-Sour Cherries

The canning/freezing season is now upon us.  Every summer is my busy season when it comes to fresh produce.  I do a lot of freezing to be able to make healthy smoothies for S all year long.  In each smoothie he gets 8 servings of his fruits/vegetables and 1 dairy serving.  There are always 4 veggies, 4 fruit, and 1 yogurt.

When S was a baby I started by making all of his baby food from produce we grew in our garden or what I was able to get at our local farmer’s market.  As a baby he ate all kinds of fruits and veggies you can’t find in stores.  For example fruits and veggies not normally found in stores he ate would be: cauliflower, red beets, zucchini, summer squash, pumpkins, raspberries, strawberries, cantaloupe, and watermelon.  Of course, I made the regular fruits and veggies: broccoli, peas, green beans, carrots, plums, bananas, peaches, pears, applesauce, and I am sure there is more I forgot.

Done on June 28, 2013

10 quarts sour red cherries

10 quarts sour red cherries

Mmmmmm.......These are good!

Mmmmmm…….These are good!

Ummm....There's something wrong with these cherries!

Ummm….There’s something wrong with these cherries!

Ohhhhh......These are some sour cherries

Ohhhhh……These are some sour cherries

I convinced B to get up early last week (he worked third shirt so it was like 10 am) and go pick cherries at his aunts.  Between the three of us, B’s aunt and S’s cousins we had 11 quarts picked in like 20 minutes.  I am going to call these red sour cherries.  They are sour, let me tell you.  I did not know that these were the kinds of cherries that are put in pies and the canned cherries.  I always thought they were sweet cherries.  So I tackled the process of washing, pitting (what a pain), cooking, blending, and pouring of cherries.  I will give a quick step by step in case you’re curious.

  • I soaked 1 quart of cherries at a time in a bowl of water to get all the dirt and grime off of them.
Soaked, Pitted, Ready to cook

Soaked, Pitted, Ready to cook

  • Instead of using a cherry pitter I just squeezed them to get the pits out.  It was pretty simple except for the crazy cherry that squirted juice in my hair, my ear, arm, apron, etc.  I didn’t find the juice on my ear until I went to take a shower many hours later.  It did take a long time to get all of the cherries pitted.
  • I split this into two batches when it came to cooking it.  I cooked the cherries in a 5 quart stock pot with water.  The first time I put water in it to the top of the cherries, and cooked them on high for about 20 minutes or until they were broken down.  The second time I only filled the water to about half way up the cherries.  It didn’t make a difference either way.  The cherries cooked down the same way.
Ready to Cook

Ready to Cook-First Batch with water filled to top of cherries.

  • When I felt they were done, I spooned them into the blender with a slotted spoon to get as little of the water/juices as possible.  Just by spooning the cherries in the blender I had to dump some of the juice out of the blender.
2nd Batch after they were cooked down.

Cooked down cherries-Second Batch

  • Blend away until it is a smooth juice.
  • I chose to pour the cherries through a sieve to prevent any missed pits or any cherry skin that did not break down cooking from getting through.
Sieving the Cherries

Sieving the Cherries

  • Once that was done I poured them into ice cube trays.  I filled up 8 ice cube trays with 16 cubes in each tray for a total of 128 cubes or ounces.  Each cube is 1 oz.
Frozen Cherries

Frozen Cherries

This is a thick juice so it works well for baby food, but thin enough that when added to water veggies it works out great for smoothies.

Finished product bagged, tagged and ready to go in the freezer

Finished product bagged, tagged and ready to go in the freezer

The rest of the summer I will continue to post about all of our canning and freezing.   I will also post pictures of our garden(s) under Crafts and how they grow throughout the season and how much produce B gets from the gardens.  If history repeats itself we will have 8 foot tomato plants and so much extra produce that our neighbors get burnt out on all the fruits and veggies as much as we do.

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Disclaimer: I have never claimed to be any great writer. So any mistakes that are made are my fault. Sometimes I mix up names B, S, and P, but I think you can figure out who I am talking about. If you find any grammatical errors just fix it in your mind so it sounds right.
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