Thursday, April 15, 2010

Eye-Opening: Home-brewed Flavours

Two posts with recipes from the same blog – one I’ve never seen before.  (Treppenwitz – the wisdom of the stairs; no idea what that means)

One offers a recipe for a homemade vanilla extract, apparently an important thing in Israel, where real vanilla extract is hard to come by.  We have been using artificial for years because of the price, and it’s not too bad.  If it is this cheap and easy, however, we may switch to homemade vanilla. 

I’ve also been meaning to make vanilla sugar for a while – an easy way of getting a natural vanilla flavour into recipes… maybe now I will.

The second is a recipe for homemade Kahlua.  I don’t know if this actually is something I’d like to try because of the easy availability of Godiva coffee liqueur.  I’m sure the “ersatz” version costs much less… but is it equally smooth and palatable?  I guess for the cost of a couple of cups of vodka, it might be worth a try.  (or, if you substitute rum, apparently you get “ersatz Tia Maria® instead of Kahlua®”… I love how he includes the ® trademark symbol even as he’s infringing…. kinda)

Anyway, there it is.  Homemade booze:  the next frontier???

I remember one time my mother tried to make homemade booze.  She made Bailey’s Irish Cream, which I decided to name “Susan’s Jewish Cream.”  I seem to remember her allowing me to decorate the bottle (probably a repurposed Bailey’s bottle).  I drew many X’s along with a skull and crossbones.

As a kid, I had basically the same attitude towards alcohol as Elisheva does now:  it ruins your liver, it kills you, it makes you stupid and lose control… JUST SAY NO.  Between that and the smoking, I sure gave my parents a hard time.  (but hey, they DID quit smoking!)

That didn’t mean we didn’t sneak tastes of the liqueurs from time to time, particularly the REAL Bailey’s, which my brother was particularly fond of.  It just tastes too, too much like candy to resist; you can barely tell the alcohol is in there.  For what it’s worth, I either didn’t like the fake Bailey’s or didn’t trust it… I mean, there are eggs and cream in there and you keep it for weeks or even months…???  (yes, even then I was crazy paranoid about food safety)

In case you want to make your own fake Bailey’s Irish Cream – or authentic Whoever-You-Are’s Jewish Cream – here is a recipe from Recipezaar that at least seventeen people seem to just love!

I now have visions of liquor bottles dancing before my aerobics-weary and focaccia-sated eyes (okay, I realize that’s a lousy metaphor). 

Ted’s standing washing dishes, after a long, hard day at work.  Must get up and wash a load of diapers.  Must tidy house for Sabbath.  Must send kiddies to bed!

Yawn.  Must play Farmville.  Must have sodie pop lying in bed watching ER.  Oops – that was my yetzer hora, dreaming of booze or at the very least, Coke.  Just ignore her.

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