Maraschino cherries originated centuries ago on the Adriatic coast of Croatia. Small, mouth-puckering sour cherries known as marasca were picked and pickled in cherry cordial and sea water, then served as a delicacy to royals and the wealthy. The modern way of making this popular beverage garnish in every way lacks this simple ancient preparation. Today, sweet cherries are soaked in a brine of chemicals, such as calcium chloride and sulfur dioxide, in order to bleach them of their natural coloring. They are then soaked in red food coloring (FD&C Red 40, a particularly harmful dye for us to consume) and high fructose corn syrup (another nasty ingredient that's harmful to us), among other things.
Now, there's no reason to use unhealthy, chemical-packed Maraschino cherries when you can easily make your own tasty ones! Try this easy, delicious recipe using your favorite cherries.
1 pound sweet cherries, pitted
½ cup sugar, preferably organic
½ cup water
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 cinnamon stick
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup maraschino liqueur or brandy
Click below for instructions: