Cherries in Brandy


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Cherries in Brandy
Source: A book, long ago forgotten—however, I have tweaked the recipe over time.
Comments: The brandy will take on a cherry flavor and it will be smooth and mellow. My friends love the macerated cherries as much as the cherry flavored brandy. This makes a lovely holiday or hostess gift.

1 can or jar of the best quality pitted red cherries in syrup
1 cinnamon stick
3 Tablespoons sugar
1/4 bottle brandy or cognac (I used some Courvoisier that I had on hand but a cheaper brand will do fine)
3 drops vanilla extract
strip of lemon peel
3 cloves

Drain the syrup from the cherries into a saucepan, add the cinnamon stick and sugar, and stir continuously while bringing to the boil. Allow to cool and strain off the syrup into a jar with the cinnamon stick and store in the refrigerator.
Reject any damaged fruit and use for a different purpose. Place the rest of the cherries in a second jar. Add brandy and vanilla. Store in a cool dry place three to four weeks.
Pour off the brandy from the cherries and save in a jug, stir in small quantities of the chilled syrup to taste. (I have never used all the chilled syrup and have discarded the leftovers but one can reserve the syrup and poach fruit in it.)
Place the cinnamon stick, lemon peel and cloves in the final jar (an attractive one, suitable for gift giving) and pack in the cherries. Fill the jar with the sweetened brandy and seal. Finish the jar with a bow and add a fancy label including the list of ingredients.
Pour over the best vanilla ice cream or pound cake or serve the cherries with whipped cream and your favorite dense chocolate torte.