Category Archives: liqueurs

Spiced Quince Liqueur

Here’s another quince liqueur recipe. This one is new to me, based on one in Barbara Ghazarian’s Simply Quince. She uses sugar and of course we don’t here at AFFFG.

Spiced Quince Liqueur

2 large quinces, washed, cored, and grated

4 cups or 750 ml vodka (I use Monopolowa)

2 cups honey (I prefer wildflower or berry honey because of their floral flavor, but clover is also fine)

6 cloves

2 3-inch cinnamon sticks

1/2 tsp mace

1 tsp almond extract

  1. Put the honey and vodka in a saucepan over medium heat and stir occasionally until the honey is dissolved.
  2. Put all ingredients in a big jar and shake it.
  3. Store in a cool place and shake it once a week.
  4. Should be ready by Thanksgiving. Strain through a coffee filter and put in a pretty jar, where the liqueur will just get better as it ages.
Current liqueur in the jar on the left. A previous year's version on the right.

Current liqueur in the jar on the left. A previous year’s version on the right. Mmmm.

Leave a comment

Filed under liqueurs, quince

Quince Liqueur

It’s my favorite time of year: quince time! I’m starting with about 25 lbs this year. Should be enough to make everything on my list:

  • Jelly
  • Vinegar
  • Liqueur
  • Poached
  • Stuffing for Thanksgiving

A friend of mine has a speakeasy party every December where many attendees bring their homemade hooches to share. I always bring quince, but this will be the first year I’m trying an SCD-legal version. Here’s the recipe I’m using:

SCD Quince Liqueur

4 c or 750 ml vodka

2/3 c water

1 1/2 c honey

2 medium-sized quinces, grated

  1. Combine the water and honey in a saucepan and bring to a low boil. Boil for five minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, pour the vodka into a large jar.
  3. When the honey-water mixture is ready, strain it into the vodka jar. Straining it will remove any foam. Set the jar aside.
  4. Wash and dry the quince to remove their fuzz.
  5. Quarter and grate them, and add to the jar. Should look something like this:
    Quince liqueur in a jar
  6. Shake it well to combine everything.
  7. Shake it once or twice a day for a week, then put in a cupboard (cool, dark place) for a few weeks, shaking it once a week. Should be ready by Thanksgiving.


Filed under liqueurs, quince, Recipes, SCD, Uncategorized

The Quinces Are Here!


Bit of a tradition around here, getting the quinces. Here are some pics. I’ve already made two batches of quince hooch and I’m working on some vinegar as we speak (recipe coming soon).

The hooch on the right is darker because I added the grated quince to an empty jar. That gave the quince time to oxidize and turn brown before I added the vodka. For the hooch on the left, I first added the vodka, sugar, and spices to the jar, then the grated quince as soon as I grated it. It’s been a couple of hours now and the one on the left is still lighter, but I do expect it to turn brown ultimately. We’ll see.

Leave a comment

Filed under liqueurs, quince

Limoncello, Limecello

Still recovering this morning from El Puerco. Thought I would take a moment to write up the limoncello and limecello recipes because folks realllllllly seemed to like them and we kept trying to tell everyone how easy the ‘cellos are to make.

This recipe is from the AMAZING cookbook, Forgotten Skills of Cooking, by Darina Allen. Do yourself a favor and buy it right this minute. It’s awesome and well worth it. We cut this recipe in half, fyi, and found it was plenty for us. If you want to make a boatload, double everything.


12 lemons (or limes if you’re making limecello), washed and dried

2 cups vodka

1 1/2 c sugar

1 3/4 c water

Makes approximately one liter.

  1. Use a peeler to peel the lemons (or limes).
  2. Put the zest in a clean glass jar and pour the vodka over it. Seal it and put it in a cool, dark place for two days.
  3. Put the sugar and water in a saucepan over high heat. Stir and bring to a boil for two minutes. Cool and store until the vodka is ready.
  4. Remove the zest from the vodka using a fine sieve or cheesecloth. Mix the sugar with the vodka and store in a tightly sealed bottle in the fridge. It’s ready to drink now, technically, but is better within a week. And best drunk (grammar?) within a few months.
  5. To serve, pour over ice. Yummy!

We somehow forgot to take a picture of these beautiful ‘cellos. Instead, here’s a picture of the red, white, and blue cake and the crazy gal who made it (she’s so proud).


Filed under Cocktails, El Puerco de Julio, liqueurs

Happy New Year!

And I say good riddance to 2009 as well.

Here’s what I’ll be doing tonight:

Homemade liqueurs in glass jars

Homemade Hooches

My sister is a fellow homemade hoochaholic. Over the holiday we swapped, so now I have–in order of preference: strawberry (hers), quince (mine), pomegranate (hers), and apricot (mine). Yum!

And a belated Merry Christmas to all from Mr. Pickle!

Pickle with antlers on

I look ridiculous, therefore it must be a holiday.

Leave a comment

Filed under liqueurs, Pickle, quince, Uncategorized

Apricot Moonshine

Okay, okay, okay. WHY have I not posted in a week? I’m blaming it on two things: photographs and my idiotically s-l-o-w laptop. I have now written this very post twice because my laptop keeps crapping out on me. I mean, I think when it’s taken me fifteen minutes just to check my e-mail…Houston, we have a problem. I bought my laptop in like…2003? The Dark Ages! Needless to say, it’s time to upgrade. I’ll get right on that as soon as dollar bills rain from the sky.

And as for photos, well, they just take FOREVER to download, edit, and then upload. If I could take a photo and then immediately post it, or if I wrote a blog that did not require photos at all, well then, I’d be a regular spew-er of blog posts!

But who cares about that?!

Here’s what’s cooking in the AFFFG kitchen: fruit liqueurs. MMMMM! One gets a little tired of jamming in the heat of August, so this is a nice alternative for what to do with all your summer fruit. Also, this ensures that I WILL be having a great autumn this year. Glug, glug!

Apricot Liqueur

2 lbs (1 kilo) fresh apricots, halved, pits discarded

3 1/4 c (750 ml) vodka (I use Monopolowa, spud moonshine, but my guru prefers 80 proof Smirnoff)

probably 3 c (750 ml) of agave syrup, but we’ll be adding that in a month

Mix the apricots and vodka together. Store in a cool dark place for one month.

My guru says not to add the sweetener until the fruit and vodka have had a chance to mingle for a month. So that’s what I’m doing. Last year I added everything at once and that seemed to work fine, but I figure the guru must know what he’s doing, so I’m giving his method a shot.

We’ll check back on this in a month. That’ll keep you on the edge of your culinary seats, right?

Apricot Liqueur

Apricot Liqueur


Filed under liqueurs

Holiday Cocktails

I need a drink! Dear readers, my apologies for the neglect. This time of year is just so chaotic, it’s ridiculous.

Remember way back in another galaxy when I made that quince moonshine? Well, I also made some apple moonshine, aka calvados from a big bushel of apples The Man brought home from the farm where he was working. It’s incredibly easy. And if you get on it right now, it’ll be ready for your big toast to 2009, which at this point seems like just hours away to me.

The recipe is on the post-it in the picture. Put all that stuff into your jar and shake it every day for a week. (Store it in a cupboard; you don’t need to refrigerate). Then, shake it once a week for a few weeks and you’re good to go. The apples will turn a bit dark; that’s natural, no worries. It tastes super good.


For Thanksgiving, The Man made up these fine cocktails. (Yes, he can cook too!)

Apple Pie

2 parts apple moonshine

3 parts 7Up/Sprite

Garnish with candied ginger and a cranberry.


With the quince moonshine, you can make this:

The Quince-Ginger

2 parts quince moonshine

3 parts ginger beer

Garnish as above.


The Apple Pie is on the left; the Quince-Ginger is on the right.


1 Comment

Filed under Cocktails, Cooking, food, Food allergies, Glorious Food, Gluten-free vegan, liqueurs, quince, Recipes

Quince Moonshine

Home sick from work today. Ate something last night that definitely did not agree with me. I hate being sick because I feel (and am), so unproductive. However, in between abusing my bathroom this afternoon, I did manage to make Ratafia de Coings, aka Quince Moonshine:

Quince Moonshine

Quince Moonshine

I’ll leave this as-is for a week, shaking it once or twice a day. Then, I’ll put it in the cupboard and shake it once a week. I’m hoping it’ll be done by Thanksgiving, but if not, I’ll have something to look forward to for New Year’s.

Next up, homemade calvados.


Filed under Cooking, food, Glorious Food, liqueurs, Recipes