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The calendar is filled with many special days that celebrate different types of food but this particular day is a special one because it’s a tribute to this unique and tasty dessert! National Cherries Jubilee Day is set aside to celebrate this treat that takes cherries and turns them into something absolutely spectacular.

To make this incredible dish, fresh cherries are cooked in a sweet sauce into which warmed liqueur, usually kirsch or fruit brandy, is mixed and set alight. As if that wasn’t delicious enough, the mixture is then spooned over a chilled bowl of vanilla ice-cream while still burning with a blue flame.

Get ready to celebrate National Cherries Jubilee Day!

History of National Cherries Jubilee Day

This show-stopping flambéed dish is credited to the famous French chef and writer, Auguste Escoffie, who created it for the 1897 Diamond Jubilee celebrations of Queen Victoria. The chef created it to make a big impact, since the cherries are set on fire right at the side of the table. The queen was well-known to be a great lover of cherries and, of course, the name came from the fact that the dish was created for her 50th “Jubilee” celebration.

While the original dish did not actually include ice cream, now that seems to be an expectation for those who serve and eat it. Cherries Jubilee became a big hit across the Atlantic and was a favourite in American restaurants of the 1950s and 60s. During this era, at home would-be chefs would aim to impress their friends with this delicious, show-stopping dessert.

After this, the dessert went by the wayside for a few decades. However, today it seems to have come back into fashion and National Cherries Jubilee Day is the ideal time to discover this dramatic and delicious dish.

How to Celebrate National Cherries Jubilee Day

Celebrating National Cherries Jubilee Day should be a load of fun! Try these interesting and delightful ways to creatively enjoy the day:

Learn How to Make Cherries Jubilee

Although this is an impressive dessert with a fancy presentation, it’s probably not as difficult as many people might think. The best Cherries Jubilee recipes are fairly basic and simple, without a lot of fuss or a ton of sugary ingredients. The idea that the creator of the recipe had was to really make the flavor of the cherries and brandy really shine!

Cherries Jubilee Recipe:

Melt 1 T. butter in a skillet, then add 2 T. sugar and stir until dissolved. Add 2 cups of pitted cherries with 1 T. lemon juice. Heat until juices are released and simmer liquid becomes a thin syrup. Remove from heat.

While mixture is still hot, sitr in 2 T. Kirsch (cherry brandy). Set alight at tableside with a long match. Serve immediately, over ice cream.

Throw a Cherries Jubilee Dinner Party

Of course, in honor of the day, a dinner party with friends would be the perfect way to celebrate by serving Cherries Jubilee as the featured dessert at the end of the meal. It might be a good idea to practice making it once or twice ahead of time, just be sure that everything works out well–and there’s no one setting anyone’s hair on fire!

Try Special Tips for Making Cherries Jubilee

  • Short-sided Pan. A shallow pan, such as one for crepes, makes it easier to not only light the cherries on fire without getting burnt, but for guests to be able to see it happening.
  • Long Matches. Keep from getting burnt by using a long match to light the dessert, allowing the hand to stay far away from the flame.
  • Frozen Cherries. Since they are already pitted and have the stems removed, this is a great ‘cheat’ to make the recipe even easier.
  • Remove From Heat. Before lighting the dessert on fire, be sure to remove the pan from the heat of the stove. This is meant to happen tableside instead (for safety as well as presentation).

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