Hawthorn liqueur has a mild, sour-sweet flavor and characteristic berry aroma. As an option, you can also add hints of citrus, prune, raisin, and vanilla.
You’ll need fresh, dried or cured red hawthorn fruits. The fruits should be ripe and mold-free. Vodka, moonshine, brandy or diluted ethanol can be used as the alcohol base. Using cognac or brandy will add light tannin aging hints which go well with hawthorns.
- Hawthorn – 100 grams of fresh or 30-50 grams of dried fruits
- Vodka (40-45% alcohol, moonshine, brandy) – 0.5 liter
- 4-5 pitted prunes (optional)
- Raising – 15 grams (optional)
- Vanillin – a pinch (optional)
- Lemon peel from a third of a lemon (optional)
- Sugar (liquid honey) – 150 grams
- Water – 100 ml
Hawthorn Liqueur Recipe
- Put the hawthorn fruits into a fermentation vessel. Add prunes, raisins, vanillin, and lemon peel (before peeling, scald the lemon with boiling water and wipe dry to remove any preservatives on its surface).
- Pour in the alcohol base and stir. Then seal the vessel tightly. Leave it in a warm dark place for 20 days. Shake it once every 3 days.
- Filter the obtained hawthorn infusion through several layers of cheesecloth. Gently press the fruits.
- Mix water and sugar (or honey) in a cooking pot. Bring the mixture to a boil and let it simmer for 5 minutes, skimming off the foam. Then let it cool to room temperature.
If you’re adding honey don’t heat up the syrup above 40°C. Stir the mixture until it becomes homogenous to preserve healthy substances.
- Mix the infusion and syrup. Bottle the liqueur for storing. In case of settling or cloudiness filter through cotton wool. 22-24% ABV.
- Prior to tasting it leave it for 5 days in a cold dark place to let the taste stabilize.
Hawthorn liqueur’s shelf-life is up to 3 years. 23-25% ABV.