Jubilees Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound (about 2 cups) fresh or frozen dark sweet cherries: If fresh, pit them. Frozen pitted cherries save you prep time.
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup orange juice (Freshly squeezed is best)
  • 1/4 cup brandy (Kirsch, a cherry brandy, is traditional, but regular brandy works well)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract (Optional, but adds a lovely depth of flavor)
  • Pinch of salt
  • Vanilla ice cream (High-quality makes a difference!)

Equipment:

  • Large skillet: A 10-inch or 12-inch works well.
  • Long matches or a lighter: For the flambé effect.

Instructions

Make the Cherry Sauce:

  • In a large skillet, whisk together the sugar and cornstarch.
  • Gradually stir in the orange juice until smooth.
  • Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly until it thickens slightly.
  • Add the cherries (drained if frozen), vanilla extract, almond extract (if using), and a pinch of salt.
  • Reduce heat to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce has a rich, syrupy consistency. This takes about 5-10 minutes for fresh cherries and slightly less for frozen.

The Flambé:

  • Important Safety Note: Before proceeding, clear the area of flammable objects and ensure you have proper ventilation. Never lean over the pan.
  • Remove the pan from the heat.
  • Warm the brandy slightly (10-15 seconds in the microwave will do). This helps with ignition.
  • Carefully add the brandy to the pan and tilt the pan slightly to ignite the alcohol. A long lighter or long match is the safest way to do this.
  • Gently shake the pan until the flames die out naturally (this should only take a few seconds).

Assemble and Serve:

  • Spoon generous portions of the warm cherries and sauce over scoops of vanilla ice cream.
  • Serve immediately and enjoy the show!

Tips:

  • Don’t overcook the cherries in the sauce phase; you want them slightly softened, not mushy.
  • The flambé is for WOW factor. If you’re uncomfortable with it, you can simply stir in the brandy and skip the ignition. It will still be delicious.
  • High-quality ingredients matter. Use a good vanilla ice cream and a decent brandy – you’ll taste the difference!

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