Start to Finish: Up to one month
Yields: Approximately 2 cups
Difficulty Level: Beginner
Channel your inner bartending rock star by making a batch of flavorful homemade peach brandy. The process is simpler than you may think -- infuse brandy with ripe fresh peaches and a touch of sugar until you achieve the desired flavor. When infusing spirits at home, Bon Appetit recommends using a quality, mid-level bottle. Avoid the cheapest brandy on the shelf, but don't feel like you have to splurge on an expensive name either. This recipe is adapted from food blog Serious Eat's DIY Peach Liqueur recipe.
- 2 cups brandy
- 2 to 4 ripe peaches
- 1/2 to 3/4 cup granulated sugar
Wash and roughly chop the peaches, discarding the pits. Add the peaches and sugar to a clean lidded glass jar. Top it off with the brandy.
Place the lid on the jar; shake it lightly to mix the ingredients together, and place the jar in a cool, dark spot. Leave it for as little as two to seven days, or as long as a month, depending on how strong you want the peach flavor to be.
Give the jar a shake and test the brandy every few days. Allow it to continue infusing for stronger flavor. Once the brandy is sufficiently flavored, pour the mixture through a cheesecloth-lined strainer set over a pitcher.
Lightly press the peaches with the back of a wooden spoon to get every drop of the flavored brandy out.
Pour the peach brandy into a clean lidded jar, and store it in the refrigerator for up to two months.
Change the flavor of your homemade peach brandy by infusing it with extra ingredients added along with the peaches at the beginning of the infusion process. Some ideas include:
- Add fresh lemon zest for a clean, tart zing that balances the sweetness of the peaches.
- Split 1 vanilla bean in half, and scrape the seeds into the jar for soft, subtle hints of vanilla.
- Roughly chop a tablespoon or two of fresh herbs such as thyme, basil or mint to give the brandy complex flavor.
Of course, you can just serve this homemade peach brandy neat or on the rocks to enjoy on its own, but why not add it to your favorite sangria or use it to create standout cocktails, including:
- A brandy melba, which combines 2 ounces of brandy with 1/2 ounce of peach brandy, 1/2 ounce raspberry liqueur, 1/2 ounce lemon juice and three dashes of orange bitters.
- A peachy twist on a brandy old-fashioned. Start by muddling a cube of sugar with a few dashes of Angostura bitters and a dash of water in the bottom of a chilled glass. Add 3 ounces of peach brandy, ice cubes and a peach slice for garnish.
- A brandy sour, which combines 2 1/2 ounces of peach brandy with 1 ounce lemon juice and 1/2 teaspoon of fine sugar. Garnish the drink with a fresh peach slice and a maraschino cherry.