Yesterday, I passed a cherry tree bursting with produce. I was instantly set back 20 years, to a sunny afternoon in Bayview, Oregon, where I spent a lovely afternoon in a cherry tree with my soulmate, fellow-foodie and lovely friend, Abra. I missed her immensely at that moment, as I often do, and set out to make some good out of all those cherries.

After picking a bunch of cherries, I passed a huge rosebush. The flowers had such a wonderful smell, and I thought it would be so very poetic to combine the cherries with the roses. So I picked a bunch. I will now be known in the neighborhood  as the crazy lady who plunders other people’s gardens.

So here is what I did: (Oh, PS. I didn’t use a recipe because I am a dare-devil and a food-revolutionary. So if you do want to try this at home, kids, enter the kitchen at your own risk!)

I rinsed the cherries and the rose petals:

I figured the cherries would need more time, so I put them in a pot first. All recipes said to remove the pits first but I didn’t.  You use as much sugar as fruit – I used sugar with pectin in it, so it would set. I started out with adding about half the sugar.
When the cherries were letting go of their juices, I added more sugar and the rose petals.

If you follow my blog regularly, you will know that I have a deep love and passion for vanilla pods. They are just about the most luxurious thing I know. Their smell and taste is so complex and I love nothing more that seeing those magical little black dots in something I am eating.

Add the scraped out vanilla seeds and the pod to the mix.


The lazy chef (Moi??) does not pit the cherries but just strain the whole mess after it has cooked long enough for the cherries to be all mushy. You get rid of the pits and the rose petals and the vanilla pod. (You can pick out the used vanilla pod and rinse it and dry it and add it to a sealed jar with sugar in it. It makes for delicious vanilla sugar!)

Back in the pot with the sugary juice, now it is time for some boiling.

With a spoon, remove all the white foam – it clouds the gel in the end and needs to be gone.

Sterilized glasses… After sterilizing them with boiling water, I rinsed them with Atamon.

Careful not to touch the insides of the glasses!! Add the hot gel.

I have some special film I used here to cover the glasses. You wet the film and it hardens. (Will not make one of my usual “as the sailor told the nun”-jokes here! Will NOT! )

Spread on toast. It had a very potent flavor, strong, cherry-rose. Yu-HUM!

I am exceeeeeeeedingly happy about the result!


(Wish you were here, Abra. I love you, darling girl!)

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3 Responses to Cherry-Rose Gel With Vanilla (For Abra)

  1. abra says:

    oh, so sweet. i was just thinking of that time in Bayshore the other day…when i saw a big cherry tree. love you lots and lots. i am going raspberry picking (without adam, thank goodness) next weekend and i can’t wait. no one to slow down my obsessive gathering and eating.

  2. Cindafuckingrella says:


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