Raspberries

by Beryl

in Cocktail,Fruit,Methods

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When I was younger, I listened to tapes of stories by the storyteller Jay O’Callahan. A quarter century later, there are lines from those tapes that repeat in my head. As I crest a steep hill on my bike, I think, “I did it oh I did it oh I did it oh I did it.” When Talley tells me our cat bit him for no reason, I lower my voice and try to channel Mr. O’Callahan: “Nonsense,” I say, “you were fooling with him.” And when discussing raspberries, I might say “raspberries” out loud, but on the inside I am saying, “Raaaaaaaaaaaaaaspberries!” This is all to say that we have a lot of raspberries.

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We spent three hours picking raspberries on Sunday at Sunseed Farm and at the risk of sounding like a Sunseed propagandist (see last post, and see upcoming tomato dinner post), we came home with a pretty delicious haul. If you are looking for a fun summer field trip, it’s worth heading up to the farm on a July day for some u-picking–it’s a beautiful drive and there’s a brewery on the way home, and even without beer, there is something very satisfying about jamming berries that you know were on a bush an hour before being put in the pot…
Consider this post a plea: we want raspberry ideas. So far we have used some for jam and some for raspberry-cello (or raspicello: think limoncello but with berries), and I will put some in a rustic tart. But even after all that, we have berries in the fridge. So now we are soliciting ideas. Any and all are wanted. Please. Please.

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anyway, here’s how we made the raspberry-cello:

Raspicello

375 ml pure grain alcohol, such as Everclear (mine was 151 proof)
1 cup raspberries
1½ cup of white sugar
1½ – 2 cups of water

If possible, filter the Everclear 3 or 4 times in a Brita, or other charcoal filter. Place raspberries and liquor in a large jar and let sit for 20 to 30 days. Mix the sugar and water in a pot and heat until sugar is dissolved. Let the mixture sit until completely cool and then mix with the alcohol and raspberry infusion. Taste for proof and sweetness and adjust if necessary. Let that mixture sit for another 20 to 30 days (it will mellow with time). Then filter the mixture 3 or 4 times using #4 coffee filters. Bottle the liquid and put in freezer if desired.

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