September 20, 2011

Liqueur 44

I am delighted to be posting about this recipe, with the gracious permission of Susan Loomis! This recipe is simply amazing- you will not believe that with these few simple ingredients and a little bit of time stewing in your cupboard, you can make something so special and delicious! This is also perfect timing for the holidays- if you make this now, it has just enough time to be created (44 days) and then mature for a few weeks in glass jars. I made this batch on 9/14/11, so I'll be ready to serve this at Thanksgiving!

Liqueur 44
1 large orange (ideally organic)
1 banana, peeled
1 vanilla bean
1 1/3 cups sugar
44 coffee beans
1 liter vodka

I make this in a large glass beverage server and I double the recipe because it's so wonderful! First, why an organic orange? Well, since you aren't peeling the orange, you're absorbing everything that's on its skin. So. Ideally organic, right? With a knife, pierce the orange(s) 44 times, going through the peel only, not into the fruit. Place in the container. Pierce the banana(s) 44 times as well as the vanilla bean(s). Add to the container. Add the coffee beans and sugar, pour the vodka over. Seal the container so that it's air tight, I put a layer of plastic wrap and then the heavy glass lid. Place in a cool, dark place for (you guessed it) 44 days! The first week, you may gently shake it daily to help dissolve the sugar. After 44 days, strain and bottle in sanitized bottles with corks. Let it age a few more weeks and then enjoy! These make exceptional gifts. I made this a few years ago and gave it as gifts- people were thrilled to get something so special.

Who is Susan Loomis? Maybe you already know! I discovered Susan Loomis and her incredible talents about 10 years ago when I read one of her books, On Rue Tatin. It was part novel part cook book, about her life in France. In addition to being truly inspiring, it also has wonderful recipes. I am especially fond of the apples baked in white wine stuffed with goat cheese and leeks, and, when I made it for my father, he declared it one of the top 10 things he'd eaten in his life, ever. And this is truly high praise coming from my father, who would never exaggerate about praise, especially when it comes to food! I have also enjoyed her French Farm House Cookbook, which is where this liqueur recipe comes from. This cookbook is incredible as well- and the liqueur section has other lovely gems like Orange Wine, Peach Wine and Cherry Wine, which we've made as well, using leaves! Really! (You have to find a friend with peach and cherry trees!) And finally, last but absolutely not least, Susan has a cooking school in France!!!! I know!!! Unbelievably exciting! No, I haven't been yet, but I am absolutely dying to go. I need to round up my family and friends for a trip! Here is the link: Hooray for Susan!


EllenP said...

I was so happy to come upon this post. I just whipped up my first batch of this liqueur yesterday and am so excited to see how it will turn out. I'm a big fan of Susan, and actually participated in one of her 1 day cooking classes in Paris a couple of years ago. I don't have her French Farmhouse cookbook, so I was glad to be able to get this recipe. I do have her Cooking On Rue Tatin book and have always wanted to try her Orange Wine recipe - maybe that will be next!! Glad to have found your blog.

EllenP said...

I have a question about this recipe. I put everything together about 3 days ago and still have at least an inch of sugar sitting at the bottom of the jar. I have been swirling it each day, but it doesn't seem to make much difference. I'm afraid to shake it too hard. Will the sugar eventually dissolve on its own?

EllenP said...

Hi again. I just strained and bottled my first batch of this delicious looking liqueur. I still have a question and hope that you will return to blogging soon so I can compare notes. I found even after gently swirling the first week and letting it sit for the entire 44 days, there was still a small amount of sugar at the bottom which had not dissolved. I just left in in the jar when I strained out the liquid. Do you have this happen? Do you stir everything together when you first put all the ingredients together? I'm looking forward to tasting it around Christmas time.