INSTRUCTIONS FOR MAKING FRUIT LIQUEUR
(Tested on raspberries, blackberries and a mix of both).
Start with fresh fruit. Place cleaned fruit into a jar.
Add very strong alcohol just so it barely covers all of the fruit. I
used double distilled vodka (alcohol content probably about
55-65%). Beware though- Apparently operating a still is VERY illegal
Let the covered jar sit for about a week and a half (it's covered so
the alcohol doesn't evaporate). Note that no fermentation takes place
here- all that happens is that the fruit soaks up the alcohol, and
releases some of its juices. Depending on the type of fruit the level
of fluid may decrease. Once you've decided that the fruit has soaked
in much of the alcohol gently pour off the fluid so as not to blemish
the fruit (try one now for a taste experience :-). Call this (very
strong) fluid rack #1.
During the following steps you probably should avoid blemishing the
fruit if at all possible.
Replace the fruit in the jar, but layer it with sugar. How much sugar
is a bit difficult to say here. I usually tried to do my best to cover
almost all of the fruit with _some_ sugar. Cover the jar again. What
happens now is that the sugar makes the fruit give off its alcohol and
shrivel slightly. In a couple of days the level of juice in the jar
should reach almost the top of the fruit. This means it is time to
pour it off again, call this rack #2.
Now we repeat the layering with sugar step (getting rack#3, rack#4,
etc) until only a very small amount of juice is released. I have been
told that with cherries this can be kept up until only a tiny little
bit of cherry skin is surrounding the pit. Each rack is sweeter and
With rasp[black]berries I got to rack #4 and then got bored waiting
for really small amounts of juice. So I took the berries, threw them
into a cloth and twisted the hell out them to release the vestiges of
alcohol and juice. This was rack#5. The left over pulp can be used
with ice-cream. Note that this step is entirely optional, four racks
were plenty enough (but why waste alcohol :-).
Now comes the fun part. Invite several friends (I used 5) and mix the
different racks in
various proportions and get some feedback on how they taste (too
sweet, too alcoholic, too dry, etc). Don't use too many friends or
else you won't have any left after the tasting. Now you should know
what proportions to mix the final product in. Disposing of juice
_not_ used in the final mix is left as an exercise to the reader (I
had some sweet stuff left over and use it on ice cream).
Thoughts on the final mix:
In my case the final mix was very close to the ratio of rack#1:
rack#2: rack#3 etc. This was convenient because I got the maximum of
liqueur with minimal leftovers.
After a visit to a friends house in Poland and a sampling of his
Cherry Liqueur (THE BEST liqueur I have EVER tasted)- I have decided
to make liqueur also. Here are the directions he gave me (for cherry
Fill a Jar with cherries.
Add alcohol to cover all the cherries.
Let sit for a week or so, by this time the cherries should have
there should be less liquid in the jar.
Pour off the liquid.
a)Layer the cherries with sugar and let sit another week.
b)Pour off resulting fluid.
c)Repeat steps a) and b) until the cherries are so small that they're
just basically the pit covered with a very thin skin.
Now mix all the batches that you poured off to suit your taste. The
first is most bitter, the last is the sweetest.
the peel and spices out and rebottle.