Brazilian Cherry Jam

Brazillian Cherries

Summer is the season for Brazilian Cherries and there are bushes of them all over Brisbane just bursting with fruit. The bright red cherries contrast beautifully against the dark green leaves so they are very easy to spot.  I have seen them along the train line and other public areas.  On a morning walk in December we came across a bush laden with them out the front of Wynnum North State School. Mark had never tried them before and found them quite a unique flavour – they have a somewhat acidic or tobacco after taste. Having grown up on them I  love the taste; I was transported back to the Mountain where we were always foraging people’s gardens for free fruit.

Unfortunately they are listed as a weed on many Australian websites and judging by the prominence of the bush throughout Brisbane I can understand why. This however is one weed we can take advantage of and perhaps help stop its spread by picking the ripe fruit before it is transported by birds and bats.

I decided to make Brazilian Cherry jam. I searched the web for recipes, learning that they are also known as the Surinam Cherry, and adapted a recipe from the Witchy Kitchen.

3 Cups Brazilian Cherries (deseeded)
1 Cup Sugar
3 Tbsp. Lemon Juice
25 Grams Pectin

Hold each cherry over a measuring cup and squeeze the seed(s) out of the fruit. Do this until you have the desired amount of cherries.

In a pan, place the cherries, sugar and lemon juice. Bring to a high simmer and stir. Lower the heat and allow to simmer on low heat stirring intermittently. Do this until you get a jam like consistency (approx 30 minutes).

Remove the jam from the heat and add the pectin, check the consistency by putting some in the freezer to see if it sets. You may need to adjust the amount of pectin you add (more or less depending).

If you are canning, place hot in sterilized jars and cover properly.
Enjoy with bread and cheese.

Posted by on February 25, 2011 at 10:07 am · 15 Comments » Permalink »

15 Responses to “Brazilian Cherry Jam”

  1. Nico wrote:

    Cherry jam with bread and more importantly, cheese? Hell yeah! Very pretty fruit too. I wonder where else in the world these are available, because I have never seen these before…

    March 26th, 2011 at 1:32 am
  2. MargM wrote:

    Easier Brazilian Cherry Jam recipe

    Tip picked fruit into a seive and wash under the tap . Place in a large pan , slowly bring to a boil, simmer for about 1/2 hour. Leave to cool a little. Place seive in a bowl and tip cooked fruit into it . Give it a good work out with a wooden spoon to get as much fruit pulp into the bowl
    Discard stones
    In a clean pan add one cup of sugar to a cup of pulp. Heat to disolve sugar . Simmer for about 1/2 an hour

    Sterilise a few clean jam jars in the microwave
    Place jam in jars, label and store in the fridge
    YUMMY stuff

    ( just made one lot yesterday and another this morning
    not such a good crop on my tree as last year)

    November 19th, 2011 at 2:04 pm
  3. lorraine wrote:

    they grow in Australia (Queensland) Very beautiful, and delicious if you like tart flavours. Must be very ripe, if they are they will drop off into your hand.

    November 21st, 2011 at 5:42 pm
  4. eileen wrote:

    To Nico: Suriname cherries grow abundantly in Bermuda as hedges and ‘weeds’. Children pick them to eat but I prefer to make jam with them. I had a plethora of blossoms on one bush but unfortunately the gardeners chopped the whole bush back to almost nothing – just an overgrown weed to them. Thankfully, we have cherry hedges and other bushes around the yard I can’t complain much as the gardeners do an excellent job with the banana trees.

    May 3rd, 2012 at 11:50 pm
  5. Gloria wrote:

    Yes they are abundant in Bermuda. Sometimes people use them in baking… flambeed, or in cakes like pineapple upside down cake. I love them right from the treeor if the make it in the house, i also make jam…always add ginger or sometimes a little pepper for a bit of zing.

    October 15th, 2012 at 5:00 am
  6. George Goring wrote:

    A couple of big bushes growing in the yard of Telstra’s Exchange, opposite Sherwood Railway Stn.

    Made some jam from them the other week. 1st time I’ve ever made jam. Too easy, and too nice!!
    Every time I feel like wingeing about Telstra’s lousy service I just think of the jam.

    Thank you, Telstra.

    November 15th, 2012 at 8:22 pm
  7. gail jacobsen wrote:

    I made my first batch of jam and followed the recipe exactly but it has gone solid!! Can’t even get it out of the jar. Did not add pectin but used the pectin int he stones. All the fruit was left with stones in. Should I reduce the amount of stones and just use the rest as pulp? Ideas would be appreciated. Thank you for your time.

    December 3rd, 2012 at 5:39 am
  8. mark wrote:

    Wow, that’s pretty amazing that it went solid! I don’t think you would want to eat a jam with stones in it, though, so next time I suggest cooking some of the stones with a bit of the fruit separately to get the pectin, then straining the pectin liquid into the rest of the fruit jam while still hot, so you don’t have stones in your jam. As for this batch, if you can get it out on a knife it might be good spread on biscuits/crackers with soft cheese — like a quince paste? Just a guess.

    December 3rd, 2012 at 8:34 am
  9. Margaret wrote:

    I always make Brazilian cherry jelly. No need for pectin, as these fruit are rich in it, and no need then to take out the seeds, a big time saver. ( with jelly the lot is strained through a cloth overnight. ) The jelly is a gorgeous ruby colour and tastes similar to guava jelly. Recipe from Amy Schauers preserving book. My mum used to talk about the jam but never found a recipe amonst her cookbooks and recipes. Great to finally see one here, as for a few years the internet yielded nothing. Another tip from my mum, an inveterate jam makér; she ußed to put seeds from citrus into small net bags and cook these in the jam, then fish out the bag before adding the sugar. And put big marbles in the pan to stop the boiling sugar from catching.

    February 13th, 2013 at 12:05 am
  10. Catie wrote:

    We have a lot of these in Hawaii. I just made a batch this afternoon. I put a bit of chili pepper for a kick, and a little bit of lime just to enhance flavor, and it’s really great. A bit thin since I add lime juice, I think. Thanks for the recipe!

    May 12th, 2013 at 5:46 pm
  11. Eugene Spatny wrote:

    Place the fruit into a saucepan, add a little water and boil until the seed starts to get soft. Put some into a large wire mesh sieve and squeeze out the fruit with a wooden spoon into a bowl as much as you can. Pour into a cup and use same amount of sugar. Place back into the saucepan and boil slowly until the jam thickens, test by placing and cooling some on a saucer. The fruit is quite tarty and doesn’t need an additional acid. I like to add a little bit of ginger.

    October 8th, 2013 at 7:42 pm
  12. Phyllis from Kapolei, Hawaii wrote:

    Happy to find like-minded people who love surinam cherries. My friend has ten bushes of these wonderful cherries and she doesn’t like or eat them. She’s always happy when I come over and pick the cherries. I made surinam cherry jam and it tasted wonderful. Have more jam and sugar and will add ginger and lemon. I’m excited to find you surinam cherry lovers. Aloha

    May 26th, 2014 at 8:03 am
  13. anne fuller wrote:

    We live in Australia, on the border of NSW and Queensland. These pretty shrubs grow like a weed on our farm, which is a worry as the birds spread them.
    Am grateful for the site and the recipes. Have made the jam and it is delicious. Will use it to accompany poultry, with ricotta in a cake or tart and to serve with blue cheese.

    June 28th, 2014 at 2:35 pm
  14. judy samuels wrote:

    love brazilian cherry jam &will make some when the fruit are ripe

    August 14th, 2014 at 9:41 am
  15. mark wrote:

    Hi Anne, I believe they are indeed a registered weed in Australia. If you don’t use the fruit, you might consider pulling them out to avoid infestation.

    September 1st, 2014 at 8:26 am

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