Cherries Foster

My idea for cherries foster, inspired by bananas foster, which is a favorite of my husband’s, came about only because bananas are so long and require an elongated serving dish. I know, that’s a weird reason to ponder other forsterable fruit. But see?

Which made me think about what other fruits would allow a different sort of presentation – basically little round fruits like cherries!

Bottled cherries like Griottines or Frabbri Amarena would make a lovely topping on ice cream. But I really wanted to “foster” ripe cherries to mimic the bananas foster dessert.

Why? Because it’s fabulous. There’s caramelization, there’s sweetness, there’s fruitiness, there’s some liqueur, there’s flambéing, and ice cream. What’s not to love!

If you’ve never pitted fresh cherries before, it’s very easy. Just use an olive pitter, sometimes called a cherry pitter! I find it best to pop out the pit from or through the stem end. It can get a little messy and there can be flying pits, but it’s easy.

And definitely worth doing to make this dessert.

Here’s what I did.

Cherries Foster
Serves 4

1 pound of ripe cherries, rinsed, dried
4 ounces of butter
1/3 cup brown sugar, packed
Good splash of Kirsch*
High quality vanilla ice cream

Pit the cherries, slice in half, and set aside.

Heat the butter and brown sugar in a skillet. Stir to dissolve the sugar.

Add the cherry halves and sauté them until soft, at least 5 minutes.

Add the splash and light the liqueur. Let it flame until the flame dies out. You have to look closely, but there are flames! Sauté for another few minutes then turn off the heat.

Scoop the ice cream into serving bowls. Top with the cherries with the cherries and sauce.

I found these cookie crumbs on Amazon and I thought they’d be good for some crunch.

I thought the crunch really added something. The possibilities are endless.

By the time I’d taken photos, the ice cream had become soup…

But boy was this a spectacular dessert. I truly loved it. And it’s pretty enough. I certainly could have done a better job of “styling” the cherries, but I added them still warm; my time was limited!

Thank you Mr. Foster.

* Vanilla liqueur or bourbon are other choices, or no alcohol.

By Published On: July 8th, 201957 Comments on Cherries Foster

About the Author: Chef Mimi

As a self-taught home cook, with many years in the culinary profession, I am passionate about all things food-related. Especially eating!


  1. Travel Gourmet July 8, 2019 at 6:21 AM - Reply

    Delicious and I would definitely prefer the cherry version!

    • chef mimi July 8, 2019 at 7:01 AM - Reply

      Bananas Foster is pretty incredible. I takes the mundane banana to a whole new level, especially with banana liqueur. But the cherry version was pretty fabulous as well!

      • Travel Gourmet July 8, 2019 at 7:06 AM

        I eat lots of raw bananas but am probably the only person in the world who doesn’t like banoffee pie or banana anything else :)

      • chef mimi July 8, 2019 at 7:10 AM

        Oh very interesting! Then you’d definitely prefer a cherry version!

  2. thatskinnychickcanbake July 8, 2019 at 6:34 AM - Reply

    YES!! You’ve opened up a whole new world of “Fosters!!” I’m thinking peach, but I wouldn’t pass up a bowl of your cherry version!

    • chef mimi July 8, 2019 at 7:00 AM - Reply

      Peach! Yes!!!

  3. Adrianne - Sweet Caramel Sunday July 8, 2019 at 7:15 AM - Reply

    This looks delicious Mimi!! Yum.

    • chef mimi July 8, 2019 at 12:37 PM - Reply

      Thank you. It really was delicious!

  4. July 8, 2019 at 10:56 AM - Reply

    Cherries foster – I love it! Perfect dessert since cherries are in abundance right now. Yes, I will take mine with Kirsch and some chocolate sprinkles! Oh, and of course ice cream…

    • chef mimi July 8, 2019 at 12:37 PM - Reply

      It was all really yummy, that’s all I can say!

  5. Ronit Penso Tasty Eats July 8, 2019 at 11:58 AM - Reply

    Banana Foster is one of my favorite desserts as well. Love this idea of using cherries instead! Will give it a try soon.

    • chef mimi July 8, 2019 at 12:36 PM - Reply

      It really is fabulous, isn’t it?!!

  6. Laura July 8, 2019 at 2:32 PM - Reply

    Mimi – when I was a teenager, my Dad took me to a French restaurant for “Cherries Jubilee” – so similar to your Cherries Foster, but I imagine with white instead of brown sugar. I was thrilled at the flambé! So thanks, lovely memories!

    • chef mimi July 8, 2019 at 2:34 PM - Reply

      I just recently heard about cherries jubilee! They sound good, also, but I like the browned butter and brown sugar, plus the bit of liqueur. But so similar. I love having food memories!

      • Laura July 8, 2019 at 2:37 PM

        I agree, brown sugar adds a depth of flavor you don’t get with white sugar!☺️

  7. Robin at Haphazard Homemaker July 8, 2019 at 7:51 PM - Reply

    Looks extremely decadent! I want some. :)

    • chef mimi July 8, 2019 at 8:23 PM - Reply

      It got a bit soupy, but to me, it got even better!

  8. eliotthecat July 9, 2019 at 4:04 AM - Reply

    I would require a larger serving dish!!!!!!! Fabulous idea, Mimi!!!

    • chef mimi July 9, 2019 at 6:17 AM - Reply

      Hahahahaha… I understand!

  9. Tandy | Lavender and Lime July 9, 2019 at 4:04 AM - Reply

    I have never tried a banana foster. I love anything with cherries so will have to wait for them to come into season to try this :)

    • chef mimi July 9, 2019 at 6:19 AM - Reply

      You should definitely try the banana version. Sautéed, flambe´d bananas with banana liqueur over ice cream. Heaven.

  10. Frank Fariello July 9, 2019 at 7:47 AM - Reply

    The stores (and my fridge) are overflowing with cherries at the moment. This looks like a fine way to use them in an interesting way. I really like recipes that take a classic dish and give it a new twist.

    • chef mimi July 9, 2019 at 7:55 AM - Reply

      This version worked so well… I’m not sure I’ll go back to bananas!

  11. Silvia July 9, 2019 at 8:20 AM - Reply

    OMG Mimi! I wonder why I’ve never thought about this! It sounds and look delicious!!!

    • chef mimi July 9, 2019 at 9:06 AM - Reply

      I know! And it’s so so good!

  12. Kim Bultman July 9, 2019 at 4:39 PM - Reply

    Fosterable fruit. :) Love it and your cherry version, Mimi! Recently a fellow brought me a half-pint jar of “mulberry mash” — thought he meant preserves — glad he told me it was 100-proof before I took a sip! I immediately thought of cherries jubilee (one of my kids’ favorite desserts because of the flame factor!) — made it when I got home! Never made bananas (or cherries) Foster. How fun! I need to make this — for them — and for me! Thank you, xo

    • chef mimi July 10, 2019 at 7:32 AM - Reply

      Wow! I bet that was strong! See, why have I never heard of cherries jubilee? And they’re French? I’m sure my mother would say that they’re not from her part of France! Anyway. You should try some kind of foster some time. I have made them just for my husband and myself, so it’s better than making a whole cake or pie. And, there’s the flame factor!

  13. kitchenriffs July 10, 2019 at 10:16 AM - Reply

    Neat dessert! I always pit my cherries through the stem end, too. And they certainly do fly about, don’t they?! Ice cream is such a pain to photograph. But I’ve found that ice cream soup can be pretty good. :-)

    • chef mimi July 10, 2019 at 3:11 PM - Reply

      Well, I ate it! (It was so good.)

  14. Angela@eatlivehappy July 10, 2019 at 8:44 PM - Reply

    Wow!!! This looks Fantastic! I love the addition of the chocolate crunch too.

    • chef mimi July 10, 2019 at 9:17 PM - Reply

      That really made a difference. But, it would have been good otherwise as well!

  15. StefanGourmet July 11, 2019 at 1:43 AM - Reply

    I’ve made Bananas Foster once (before blogging) and it was delicious but enough calories for a whole meal. I like the idea of a cherry version. Cherries, caramel, and chocolate are a great combination. I suppose I would call it flambeed cherries with ice cream.

    • chef mimi July 11, 2019 at 7:29 AM - Reply

      Except for the butter part. That’s what makes the foster part. Bananas Foster uses rum and banana liqueur, so I guess I could have been more creative with the alcohol, but it turned out really well as is.

  16. StefanGourmet July 11, 2019 at 1:57 AM - Reply

    PS I also pit cherries through the stem end. In fact, I bought the pitter after seeing it on your blog! Do not wear white while pitting…

    • chef mimi July 11, 2019 at 7:27 AM - Reply

      No, definitely not! The pitter works well with olives also.

  17. David July 11, 2019 at 8:47 AM - Reply

    What a great idea! Funny thing is that I had the same complaint about Bananas Foster – my plates were the wrong shape. Mark said I simply need to cut them in half and serve in a regular dish! I hate practical responses… 😊

    • chef mimi July 11, 2019 at 9:01 AM - Reply

      No kidding. I have thought about slicing them…

  18. Our Growing Paynes July 11, 2019 at 2:30 PM - Reply

    Oh my. An amazing dessert.

    • chef mimi July 11, 2019 at 4:08 PM - Reply

      It was so good. Thanks!

  19. Ashley July 11, 2019 at 7:31 PM - Reply

    You are truly amazing, Mimi!!!!

    • chef mimi July 11, 2019 at 8:38 PM - Reply

      Awwwww. Thank you!

  20. Sissi July 12, 2019 at 5:44 AM - Reply

    I have never heard about any foster dessert, so it was a very interesting discovery. It sounds delicious and light and I prefer the cherry version by far!

    • chef mimi July 12, 2019 at 7:44 AM - Reply

      The “fostering” truly takes bananas to a new level, but I personally prefer cherries over bananas, so I enjoyed my creation!

  21. Michelle July 12, 2019 at 8:28 PM - Reply

    You’ve outdone yourself!

    • chef mimi July 12, 2019 at 9:04 PM - Reply

      Aww, thanks!

  22. July 14, 2019 at 2:10 AM - Reply

    Delicious recipe. Perfect for all those fresh ripe cherries in the supermarket at the moment!

    • chef mimi July 15, 2019 at 3:26 PM - Reply

      Yes!!! Such a wonderful time of year!

  23. cookingontheweekends July 14, 2019 at 3:43 PM - Reply

    First, that turquoise bowl is so beautiful! Love it.
    And summer cherries! I can’t get enough, and this is such a delicious way to use them. So delicious!

    • chef mimi July 14, 2019 at 6:37 PM - Reply

      Thank you. That’s actually a melamine bowl! This was a delicious dessert.

  24. All That I'm Eating July 15, 2019 at 3:35 AM - Reply

    These sound great! I really need to get myself a cherry de-stoner!

    • chef mimi July 15, 2019 at 7:51 AM - Reply

      You do, because they work on olives as well!

  25. David @ Spiced July 16, 2019 at 6:50 AM - Reply

    What a great idea! Laura and I used to make bananas foster all the time when we first got married. It was our ‘specialty dessert.’ We haven’t made it in years now though. We need to do that again! But first I want to try this cherry version. It looks amazing, Mimi! Plus, we have some kirsch hanging out in the liquor cabinet just waiting for a use…and I think I found it! :-)

  26. chef mimi July 16, 2019 at 6:55 AM - Reply

    I honestly don’t know what else to do with kirsch! It’s so strong! Of course you bake a lot… This cherry foster was really exceptional. I played it safe with the kirsch, and didn’t use a liqueur, but you could really go crazy and be creative with both the booze and the liqueur.

  27. sippitysup July 16, 2019 at 4:16 PM - Reply

    It’s not so weird. Visual appeal is a huge part of the success of any dish. So the serving method matters. GREG

    • chef mimi July 17, 2019 at 6:42 AM - Reply

      Well thanks.

  28. Emma @ Bake Then Eat July 28, 2019 at 11:34 PM - Reply

    Oh yes please give me a big ol’ bowl of this dessert, big yum.

    • chef mimi July 29, 2019 at 7:02 AM - Reply

      Yeah, it was that good.

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