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Wednesday, 3 August 2016

Cherry and almond Ratafia

That kind of rolls of the tongue rather nicely Ratafia  and this is a recipe that I have had in mind for sometime.  I have a bottle of brandy in the cupboard and so I am off to the market this dinner time to see if I can get some really nice cherries without paying too much through the nose for them. I have seen them upwards of 6.00 per kg.  When the price goes up on something - I buy a little but not as much as I would normally do. After all a lot of what I do is to create little treats for the family during the course of the winter months.  If you have a bit of land for goodness sake invest in a couple of cherry trees.  I had one in the garden a Stella supposed to be a dwarf variety until the landlord's agents interfered with it - was supposed to give it a pruning and they have literally left a stump in the garden because they did not know how to prune.  I was getting about 40lb plus of cherries off the tree if I beat the birds to it.  The cherries were lovely and red and dark like a Morello.

Anyways here is the recipe.  It is taken from a very useful cookery book called Seasonal Preserves by Joanna Farrow ISBN; 978-1-84773438-9.

Ingredients;

50g/2oz blanched almonds roughly chopped
300g/10 1/2 oz cherries halved and stoned
75g/3 oz caster sugar
300ml/ 1/2 pint of Brandy

makes approximately 12 1/2 fl oz

Method;

lightly roast the almonds and put in a thoroughly clean Kilner style jar with the cherries and the sugar.  shake the jar to mix the ingredients together.

add the Brandy and leave to stand  for two days shaking the jar occasionally to dissolve the sugar.  Store in a cool place for about three months.

Strain through a muslin cloth or jelly bag into a jug reserving the fruit and nuts.  Pour the liqueur into a thoroughly cleaned jar or bottle.  The fruit and nuts can be served now with cream and a drizzle of the liqueur or added to a trifle, fruit cakes or almond flavoured tarts.  I would be inclined to freeze the fruit and nuts and pop them in the freezer for use over the Christmas period to make a really boozy trifle.

Instructions say store for up to 6 months and serve in small glasses over ice.  I have in the past kept liqueurs longer than this so this is perhaps a guideline only and as long as it still tastes good and looks good, and its something naughty and nice for the pantry shelf.

Catch you later.

Pattypan

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