The first time I made it, I called it “Cheater’s Cherries Jubilee.” For a few nights more in a row than I’ll admit on the internet, I pitted ~2 dozen cherries into a small bowl, dropped a piece of orange peel in, and popped it in the microwave for 90 seconds.
I scooped the still-warm, slightly-tart cherry sauce over a bowl of vanilla ice cream and borderline inappropriately oooh’ed and aaah’ed my way through dessert.
But only borderline inappropriately.
90 seconds. That’s all it took for a quarter-pound of fresh cherries to cook into a borderline magical dessert sauce. No butter, no booze, and most importantly: I still have both of my eyebrows.
After a couple of nights of making single-serving cherry sauce in the microwave, I buckled down and pitted an entire pound of cherries for a larger, “yogurt topping” batch.
It took two 90-second trips through the microwave with a couple of pieces of orange peel, a little cornstarch to help it “gel” just a bit more, and a few drops of liquid stevia at the end just to sweeten it enough to take the edge off my morning bowl of plain Greek yogurt. (When I make it for ice cream, I dodn’t add sweetener at all.)
Making your own fresh cherry dessert topping couldn’t be easier. I mean, maybe it could… but I think you’ll be happier with a DIY version than opening up a jar.
And it’s applications are endless: top pancakes and waffles, scoop over ice cream, swirl into your favorite brownie batter, serve over plain cheesecake, swirl into yogurt… I could keep going. But then I’d have to make another batch.
Fresh Cherry Sauce
Fresh cherries are turned into a decadent ice cream or yogurt topping in just 3 minutes in the microwave.
- ~1 1/4 lb cherries, pitted to yield 1 lb
- 2 1x3-inch lengths of orange peel
- 1/2 tsp cornstarch
- Sweetener of choice (optional; I used 4 drops liquid stevia)
- Place cherries and orange peel in a microwave-safe bowl and sprinkle cornstarch over top.
- Microwave on high for 90 seconds, stir, and heat for another 90 seconds - the mixture will bubble up so don't walk away! Or better, place a paper towel under the bowl.
- Add any sweetener, if desired, and let cool a bit.
- Scoop the still-warm sauce over ice cream for Cheater Cherries Jubilee or chill completely and swirl into yogurt.
- Will keep at least a week in a jar in the fridge.
Yields: 2 cups
Estimated time: 15 minutes