Spicy Cherry Chia Jam

We were so excited about the cherry tree in our back yard and even more thrilled that the cherries are edible and sweet! I spent hours and got many mosquito bites picking them from the branches. All of a sudden we had a couple pounds of cherries and quite honestly I had no idea what to do with them. I knew I needed to make something with them because we couldn't possibly eat them all before they went bad. I took to Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest looking for the perfect idea. 
Cherry jam seemed like the ideal choice because 1) I wouldn't have to bake and 2) I could make it semi-healthy. I ended up stumbling upon a recipe for a Cherry Chia Jam from My Heart Beets blog and adapted it to my tastes. The best thing about this is that in only has five ingredients and takes just fifteen minutes to cook! (A bit longer if you are pitting your own cherries.)
I made it with jalapeño flakes, added a dash of vanilla (totally optional), and used Turkish honey (from Trader Joe's), which gave it a fragrant flavor profile with a nice heat at the end. It's not by any means super spicy, but it strikes the perfect balance between sweet and heat. And trust me, it tastes good on everything! Toast, waffles, pancakes, Greek yogurt... It also could be mixed with cream cheese for a delicious dip! So many good options! 
If you have cherries, seriously you have got to try this out!

Spicy Cherry Chia Jam

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of pitted cherries
  • 2 tablespoons of Turkish honey
  • 2 tablespoons of chia seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon of jalapeño flakes (could substitute for fresh jalapeño)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla

Instructions

  1. Add the pitted cherries and Turkish honey into a saucepan over medium heat.
  2. Cook for five minutes, stirring frequently. Gently mash the cherries with a spoon to release their juice.
  3. Stir in the jalapeño flakes and vanilla.
  4. Bring the mixture to a low boil then reduce the heat to low and cover, simmering for 10 minutes.
  5. Turn off the heat and stir in the chia seeds. The jam will begin to thicken as it cools.
  6. Once cool enough, taste and add more honey to sweeten, if needed.
  7. Store in a clean mason jar. If air-tight, it should keep for 1-2 weeks.
Let us know if you try this recipe! I'd love to hear your thoughts! For me, I'll be putting it on everything for the next couple weeks! 

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