Just this morning Andrew announced that he wanted to make flavoured vodka for his brother. As I've been struggling to find inexpensive, greener gifts this was fantastic and should be a blast to make. I briefly considered the flavoured vodka as wedding favours, then realized that most of my father's relatives don't drink... soooo Yule presents they will remain :)
The Pros to Homemade Flavoured Vodka:
Sort of handmade (well, hand put together)
Inexpensive (when done for more than one gift-person)
Given in glass containers (looking for some recycled glass options... but may stick to dollarstore cheap-ness!)
Consumable=no waste or clutter!
Well, it might turn out to taste like poo... which would be kinda unpleasant as the taster and a huge waste of a quart of vodka.
I might think that coffee flavoured vodka is a great idea... but my brother may think otherwise. (however, he IS addicted to coffee, so we shall see!)
After hours of browsing the inter-web and chat forums, Andrew proclaimed himself an expert on vodka flavouring. His ridiculous want to research topics to death usually pays off as I hate reading instructions and would much rather "wing it". After a nice supper we set up shop on our dining room table next to the farmer's market sunflowers I bought for myself this weekend (seriously, everyone should buy themselves flowers from sustainable sources- happy day!).
- 1 quart of absolute vodka (since we were going for economical the yummy and/or sustainable stuff wasn't an option. However, I vetoed Smirnoff. Really, I have limits. If you had some moneys, there are some nice organic vodkas available now which would have been cool).
- Organic vanilla beans (2)
- Fair Trade Organic coffee beans (which I was going to buy for my coffee anyways)
- Local Honey comb
- Three 500ml (um 2 cups) mason jars (which we already had from our jamming fiasco)
Andrew determined the appropriate amount of coffee beans and honey. He reported that coffee beans can easily overpower and change the alcohol to a more bitter flavour and need to be closely monitored. He also informed me that the vanilla bean needed to be cut down the middle as they have very tough skin and won't flavour the vodka otherwise. I would have just dumped the stuff in and hoped for the best!
After filling the mason jars with vodka, we sealed them tightly and stored them in a shoe box in our tiny storage closet.
Two days from now the coffee-vodka should be ready and we'll have to pour it through a filter (reusable, unbleached hemp coffee filter) into another mason jar. The other two will be ready in about a week. The honey vodka may turn into more of a liqueur (yum!). We also may have to dilute the mixture with more vodka as the flavours could be a bit intense. According to Andrew, it easier to dilute than add flavour. He also informed me that we'll be checking on them daily... Sigh, he's so efficient!
So there you have it! It was WAY more fun than making soap or even jam and super easy. We'll see how it actually tastes in a few days.... Now to find inexpensive, cute, recycled glass containers....
(mmmm real vanilla!!)article and photos copyright of EcoYogini at firstname.lastname@example.org