I am just sitting around today poking at my blog, messing with my recommended books list, adding new links to old posts there, and leaving obscure comments on old posts that I am running into that are never likely to be found by anyone else, but you never know. I am also waiting for our new refrigerator to arrive. So it seemed like a good time to write a Sunday post, which we all know is the incredibly folksy kind of post. The kind of post where a person can talk about a refrigerator and not have it mean anything. Yes, I could develop a refrigerator discussion into a rumination on aging, or life in Minnesota, but on Sundays we let the new refrigerator just be a place to put food that we want to keep cold.
And the refrigerator breathes a cool sigh of relief.
I have a sort of vision for this new refrigerator. Part of me is aware of the perversity and ultimate unhealthiness of this vision, but nevertheless it leaves me breathlessly excited about the arrival of our new appliance.
I picture my big, shiny, white, clean new refrigerator shelf, which is far bigger than anything I had in our old, small, freezes-anything-too-far-to-the-back refrigerator. And on this beautiful shelf are jars, just jars. None of them will be fancy, but all will be at least plain, clear, unlabeled. The left side is full of slightly varying in color mayonnaises and aiolis. Saffron mayonnaise, sweet meyer lemon mayonnaise, sesame tamari mayonnaise. The other side of the refrigerator shelf, the right side, will all be full of fruit syrups, each one like a big, fat, sweet jewel, full of light and rich gem colors. Cherry syrup and strawberry, peach and plum, raspberry and mango, all waiting to be poured into a clear glass a quarter to a third full, and then finished with the most strongly sparkling water I could find. When one adds the strongly sparkling water to the syrup it foams beautifully into a pale opaque colored version of the syrup itself, and tastes quintessentially of the fruit one started with.
No one asked about the mayonnaise, but I did get a comment request last week for a fruit syrup recipe when I mentioned them in passing. I thought, "Why not?"
This is a very simple recipe (well, simple to write, or explain, but it can vary, based on the fruit, as to how much work it is). I am going to base our fruit syrup recipe here on the bucket of cherries my incredibly kind and generous co-worker gave me just yesterday. But similar principles apply to other fruits.
1. Get a bucket of some kind of non sweet pie cherry. These should be fresh cherries ideally, given to you by someone you work with.
2. Spend a couple hours pitting these cherries on your back porch or somewhere pleasant outside. You have to do this outside because pitting cherries is roughly like slaughtering a pig. Staining red splatters would spray the entirety of the inside of your house no matter what precautions you took if you did it inside.
3. Discard the pits. These are not edible! Too crunchy!
4. Put all your cherries in a big pot. Add a whole lot of agave syrup, or if you will, sugar. But they have to be organic because otherwise you will get cancer and die. I don't want you to die!
5. "How much syrup or sugar?" You ask. A whole lot. But not too much. I know this is awful cooking blog measuring, but fortunately there is a huge margin here before you can go wrong and I'm not even sure you could go wrong.
6. Cook on low heat for a couple of hours. Ideally it will look a bit thickish, but it's still going to be quite liquidy.
7. Just let it sit there for some hours cooling.
8. Strain it through a metal mesh thing, you know, a strainer, that's like mesh. You really want to stir and get all the precious liquid that you can out and into your jar.
9. Add your beautiful, deep red jar of cherry syrup to your shelf with the blueberry syrup, plum syrup, espresso syrup, and cantaloupe syrup. These will be to the right of your Aiolis, unless you are tragically allergic to raw eggs and have something else on that side of the refrigerator.
10. Reserve all the drained cherries for other recreational eating opportunities!