Blood and Sand Jam

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Every summer I have a list of things I want to finish before I go back to work.  I usually do a really good job of crossing things off the first few weeks but then I slow down.  It either gets too hot to turn on the oven or use the stove or I just find other things I’d rather do.

Love the sweet and tart flavor in this Blood and Sand Jam.

This past summer was no different.  I did awesome in June but by July I was done with it.  So the week before school started I looked at my list and started freaking out.  There were so many things left on the list!    I got it into my head one day that if I went to the farmer’s market and the grocery store early that I could come home and do a bunch of canning.  I had 3 things on my list under canning and wanting to do them all in one day.

Just a few simple ingredients make a delicious Blood and Sand Jam

I ended up doing it.  It was super hot that day and I was sweating in the kitchen but because I did them all in a row it only took about 3 hours.   The first jam I canned was this Blood and Sand Jam.   Weird name right?   I thought so but I loved what was in it.  I also thought it would be a fabulous homemade holiday gift which is the theme for this weeks Sunday Supper.

So this jam is based on the flavors of the cocktail Blood and Sand.  It is filled with oranges, cherries, and lemon juice.  Then it’s supposed to have Scotch, cherry brandy, and bitters in it.   I’ll be the first to admit I didn’t put any of those in my jam.  I didn’t have any of these in my house and wasn’t going to buy them just for this jam.  So instead I used citrus vodka and cherry vodka.   I hoped it would taste just as good.

Love the sweet and tart flavor of this Blood and Sand Jam, named after the cocktail.

I whipped this one up and it was really easy.  You have to make sure to start a few hours before you want to make the jam because the oranges have to boil on the stove for a while.   It makes this jam easier though because there is no need to peel the oranges which makes it super easy.  I also bought frozen black cherries so they were already pitted which made this jam a snap!

I whipped up the jam, put in the liquor, and hoped it would work.  I was worried because of the lack of pectin in the recipe but oranges have a natural pectin and after boiling for 15 minutes it became thick enough for me to jar.

Blood and Sand Jam, named after the cocktail, is a delicious combination of oranges and cherries. It's great on toast or served over cream cheese with crackers.

The resulting jam is one of my favorites to date!   It’s sweet from the cherries and tart from the oranges plus you can taste the liquor in it.   I found it best to use it on biscuits or toast but it was also super delicious on top of an adult sundae.   Such great flavors and it’s a gorgeous deep burgundy color.   I can’t wait to give these as Christmas gifts!

Love the sweet and tart flavor in this Blood and Sand Jam.

Blood and Sand Jam

Yield: 5 half pints
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 25 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes

A delicious jam made with sweet black cherries and tart oranges.


  • 2 medium oranges
  • 2 lbs. black cherries
  • 2 c. sugar
  • 6 Tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/3 c. citrus vodka
  • 1/4 c. cherry vodka (or cherry Brandy)


  1. Put the oranges in a pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil and reduce the heat to medium. Cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 1 hour. Remove from pot and cool.
  2. Meanwhile, stem, halve, and pit the cherries. Combine them with the sugar and lemon juice in a large pot on the stove. Let them stand for 30 minutes while the oranges cool.
  3. In the meantime, prepare the jars, lids, and boiling water canner.
  4. When the oranges are cooled, place them on a cutting board and chop. Discard any seeds and stem ends. Add them chopped oranges to the pot with the cherries.
  5. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium high heat, stirring frequently. Boil hard, stirring frequently, until the jam has thickened. It took my jam about 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let rest for 5 minutes. Stir in the citrus vodka and cherry vodka and stir.
  6. Ladle the jam into the hot jars and leave 1/4 inch of headspace. Wipe the rim, center the lids on the jars. Screw the bands to fingertip tight. Place in the boiling water canner.
  7. Cover and allow to boil for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and remove lid. Allow to cool for 5 mintues then remove the jars from the water. Cool for 24 hours then check the seals.


Adapted from Preservation Society Home Preserves by Camilla Wynne

Blood and Sand Jam is a sweet and tart combination of oranges and cherries.



  1. How much bitters did the original jam call for? I want to make this recipe with the scotch and cherry brandy. Thank you.

  2. I agree the name can raise some brows but it is one that requires a look to see what it in blood and sand jam. The cherries and the red so I assume that is the blood but where does the sand come in???? Anyway, this looks amazing – how can you go wrong with those flavors!!!!

  3. I’ve not heard of either, the drink or the combination of flavors in a jam. It looks and sounds delicious! I haven’t made jam in a while. Looks like I’ll be pulling out my jars for this one!

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