Brandied Fruit has been a favorite treat for those who enjoy the delicious bite of fruit with the full-bodied flavor of Brandy. Brandy is perhaps the ultimate distillation of fruit, as it starts its life as a bountiful wine with a delightful bouquet, which is then distilled down into the spirit that is Brandy. From there, the addition of sugar, heat, and a select number of herbs, spices, and occasionally additional fruit is added to create this wonderful treat with the rich bite.
History of Brandied Fruit Day
20th OCT is celebrated as Brandied Fruit Day. The history of Brandied Fruit Day is, unfortunately, lost to the mists of time. But the tradition of creating this wonderful midwinter treat is not. Brandied fruit wasn’t just a delicious treat for those with the money and resources to make it, but was essentially a high-class method of preservation. Besides being delicious on its own, it also provides a long lasting way of enhancing your Brandy, and preserving fruits that could otherwise be lost for the winter.
How to Celebrate Brandied Fruit Day
Celebrating Brandied Fruit Day is a cinch, you simply crack open a jar of Brandied fruit and gobble it down with relish! (Proverbial relish, as to enjoy, not actual relish… ewww). What’s that? You don’t have brandied fruit? Well, you can often buy it at certain specialty stores, but to really get the full experience you should try making some yourself. Be aware that this is not a short process. The beginning is as simple as getting the ingredients together, getting some sterilized glass canning jars, and following the recipe.
Be warned though, once the initial process is complete, it’ll be going into that jar for a good 3 weeks, so be sure you’re prepared for that kind of wait.
To help you Celebrate Brandied Fruit Day, we’re providing you with a simple and straight-forward recipe to let you try making your own!
First select a minimum 80 proof Brandy or Cognac, and whatever fruit you happen to love. Be sure it’s high quality and fresh though, nothings worse than mushy bruised fruit in making Brandied Fruit.
The combination is fairly simple, you simply take one pound of fresh fruit, and add:
3-5 T of Sugar (Modify for how sweet the fruit is)
½ a Citrus peel (¼ if it’s Orange)
½ t of allspice, cinnamon, Chile, Red peppers, or any other spices that suit you.
½ t of Vanilla extract or Vanilla bean
Slowly simmer it all until it’s cooked clear, and allow to cool off before proceeding.
Stir in 2 ½ cups of the brandy or cognac you’ve selected.
Sterilize the jars and lids by your preferred method (simply washing them is sufficient)
Pack the fruit into the jars, with about ½ an inch at the head, and cover with the above mixture. Add the zest and other spices to the jars. Then seal and let sit for 2-4 weeks.
As you consume this treat, it’s always good to top it back up to keep it safe to eat, as the brandy keeps it from going bad. You can enjoy this all year long, 9-10 months if its kept refrigerated.