When we visited Lyman Orchards a couple of weekends ago, Melissa and I picked nearly 10 pounds of peaches! While we would have liked to diversify our fruits with apples, alas they were not in season (at least not the type that we both agree are the best… Macoun). So what are we to do with so much fruit? Eat them, yes. Bake pies and cobbler. Make ice cream. Check, check, check, and check. All of these are excellent ideas, and thank you for suggesting them. But we need something that will last a bit longer so we can remember those last days of summer well into late fall. That picture on the side looks like our answer is canning, but no. The mason jar is just a vessel for a sweet, smooth, and delightful liqueur (okay, fine, “schnapps” if you prefer). The wonderful thing about making liqueur is that it’s just so darn easy you can’t resist making a few batches – and that’s what I have already done. It also won’t spoil quickly because the alcohol acts as a natural preservative. So savor the flavor, and sip slowly to really enjoy. Even though summer is at an end (and we are forced to resume our tale of two cities), at least some things are looking peachy.
Update: The recipe below has been updated based on my findings from at least three batches. Given now are two formulations, one for sipping (with dilution) and one for mixing (without).
In need of a peach cocktail recipe? Try our You’re a Peach!
- 2 peaches, pits removed, peeled, sliced thin
- 1/2 cup sugar
- Lemon peel
- 1 cup vodka (I used New Amsterdam because it's cheap but without much bite)
- 1/4 cup water (only for a sipping liqueur)
- Peel and slice peaches thinly. Place in a 1 pint mason jar, or larger if you prefer. Add 1/2 cup sugar. Add a twist of lemon peel. Pour in vodka. Add about 1/4 cup of water if you intend to sip or leave this out if you intend to mix in cocktails. Cap and shake vigorously. Leave for 2-4 days, agitating once or twice a day. You can sample the liquid after 2 days to determine if the taste is peachy enough, if not leave for another couple of days. When the taste is acceptable, strain out the peaches and any solids in a fine mesh strainer (or several strainers from coarse to fine). The most annoying part of the process is filtration so try to eliminate as much solid matter as possible. Strain the liquid through a coffee filter (feel free to use more than one). You will probably want to filter several more times to make sure that you are left with a transparent liquid without dispersed solids as these look odd and develop off-flavors. If you prefer a lighter sipping liqueur you can dilute further at this point, but I don't think it is entirely necessary. Decant into your favorite bottle and let the liqueur mellow for a couple of days. Enjoy neat, chilled, or mix into a new and exciting cocktail!
- Makes ~300-400mL after filtering.