Juicy red Bing cherries are ideal with duck, ham, or a cheese course. They'll keep for at least a year. After a few months in the refrigerator, the almond flavor of the cherry stones pervades the pickling liquid, which is then good for using in marinades.
2 1/2 pounds sweet cherries
3 1/2 cups red wine vinegar
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon black peppercorns
4 whole cloves
2 (3-inch) cinnamon sticks
2 bay leaves
1 (10 x 1/2-inch) lemon rind strip
How to Make It
Wash and pat the cherries dry. Pierce each of the cherries several times with a fork; set aside.
Place vinegar and remaining ingredients in a nonaluminum saucepan; bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve sugar. Reduce heat; simmer 5 minutes. Remove from heat; let stand 30 minutes. Strain vinegar mixture through a sieve over a bowl; discard solids. Return vinegar mixture to pan; bring to a boil.
Spoon cherries into hot jars; cover with hot vinegar mixture, leaving 1/4-inch head space. Cover jars with metal lids; screw on bands. Cool. Refrigerate at least 2 weeks before serving.