Saturday, December 02, 2017

How to make your own candied cherries and pineapple

Years ago, I made my own candied fruit for some fruitcakes I wanted to bake as kitchen gifts.  Does anyone else remember Farm Journal cookbooks?  They were some of my favorites.  As I've mentioned before, I think that these delightful books were sort of the precursor of Taste of Home magazine.  They were well done; there was a Farm Journal Test Kitchen and so on.  But there were chatty comments accompanying many of the recipes, detailing where the recipes came from or a bit of their history.  My mother and I both loved these books, and we owned many.

The Farm Journal Country Cookbook is where I found this recipe, in a chapter on Country Cakes and Frostings.  A special section within the chapter talks about Surprisingly Different Fruitcakes.  Oh, I can't help myself -- I am going to have to give you a taste of the prose that introduces this section:

""Many women treasure their mothers' and grandmothers' fruitcake recipes and fondly dream, when the first thoughts of the Christmas holidays arrive, of baking these old-fashioned loaves.  One look at the recipes, yellow with age, reminds them of the giant-size yields and the time required to bake these cakes.  The search for tasty substitutions starts.  This annual post-Thanksgiving kitchen drama inspired us to offer you smaller and simpler recipes that yield big dividends in taste."

The candied fruit directions are from a recipe called Last-Minute Fruitcakes.  I remember them as being very good, so I will share the recipe later this month.  But for now, I will share the fruit recipe.

 2 20-ounce cans of sliced pineapple (for this you want the kind that's packed in syrup, not juice)
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1 2/3 cups syrup drained from pineapple
3 8-ounce jars maraschino cherries, well drained

Drain the pineapple, reserving the syrup.  You will need 1 2/3 cup.

Combine the sugar, corn syrup, and pineapple syrup in a heavy 10-inch skillet.  Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture boils.  Cook until temperature reaches 234º on a candy thermometer.

Add a third of the pineapple slices; bring to a boil.  Reduce heat; simmer 25 minutes or until pineapple is transparent around edges.  Remove from skillet with slotted spoon and place pineapple on a wire rack set over waxed paper.  Repeat with remaining pineapple, cooking a third of the slices each time.

Then add the drained maraschino cherries to the skillet.  Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer for 25 minutes.  Again, remove the cherries from the syrup with a slotted spoon and place the candied cherries on a wire rack over waxed paper to drain completely.  Let the candied fruit dry for 24 hours at room temperature before using or storing.


  1. This looks so easy to make... and probably taste much better than shop bought. Thank you Mrs T x

    1. They are very good, Phoebe. Much more flavorful than store-bought candied fruit. I don't like citron and the other things in the mixed candied fruit, so this makes a great substitute.

  2. Love the calendars!

    1. Thanks, Vicki! I'm glad you enjoyed seeing them!


Thanks for visiting my Christmas kitchen! I love company here in my kitchen all year round, so please leave a comment so I'll know you visited. I will answer any questions and comments here on the blog, so be sure and check "notify me" to see replies. God bless your day!