Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Elderberry Liqueur

I've been toying with the idea of making my own liqueurs again. I had some good success with steeping a bag of Good Earth's Tropical Peach Black Tea in a cup vodka for a about three hours and sweetening to taste with some stevia extract. It's just sweet enough, and nice enjoyed straight or as a part of a tea martini I have yet to attempt (I refuse to call it a "tea-tini." Have some dignity, people!). I therefor decided to make use of some of the frozen elderberries I picked last October. I sware I have twelve cups of the stuff and have yet to do anything with them. I found a simple and promissing recipe from Pattie Vargas and Rich Gulling's Cordials from Your Kitchen.

Elderberries, sugar, lemon, water, and vodka...that's it. Allow a month to mature and I should have my own wild elderberry liqueur!

I reduced the original recipe by two-thirds, to make a trial batch before committing more of these hard-to-find treasures of the mountain. ^_^

I'd like to note that this is not a place to use spendy vodka, I just used Smirnoff. Though I did go for the 100-proof stuff because I'd be watering the vodka down in the process of making the liqueur.

Wild Elderberry Liqueur
Originally by Pattie Vargas and Rich Gulling
Modified by moi

1½ cups Wild Elderberries
½ cup Sugar
½ tsp. Lemon Zest
2 tsp. Lemon Juice
½ cup Water
1 cup Vodka (100-proof)

Crush the elderberries and sugar in a bowl and let sit one hour. Add lemon zest and juice, stir to combine. Transfer the elderberry mash into a clean, quart jar. Add the water and vodka. Age in a dark, cool place for one month, shaking once or twice a week.

Strain and filter the mixture, then transfer to a bottle. Age another month for best results.
Now the long wait begins..................