Infusions

My recent bursts of voracious citrus shopping have left me with far more blood oranges and Meyer lemons than I can possibly consume. In the past couple months I've worked my way through a bevy of citrus concoctions: marinades, salad dressings, flavored mayonnaise, court bouillons, and citrus ice creams.

All delicious, but as the season is really starting to wind down the time has come to preserve these lovely winter flavors. I've got orange and lemon juice cubes in the freezer and am fully intending on getting myself over to Zabar's this week to pick up a few canning jars for Moroccan preserved lemons and blood orange marmalade. Candied rinds are a given, but I really want to try and capture the flavors in as many different ways as possible. And what better way of capturing these pure, brilliant flavors than with infusions!?

I'm experimenting with three different kinds right now: blood orange vodka, Meyer lemon olive oil, and (just because) a blackberry-spice vodka with cloves, ginger, cinnamon, and cardamom.

These are my first attempts so I'm really looking forward to seeing how they turn out. I should start to get results in about a week--just in time for BFF Matt to help me sample when he arrives from Vegas for our two-day mini-visit. In the meantime, I'm quite taken with the little mad scientist lab I have building in my kitchen. Few things more exciting than multi-colored elixirs brewing in glass jars of varying shapes and sizes. Once I get my canning projects started it's going to look even more intriguing!

Hmmm... Now all I need now is a handsome male assistant to rinse my beakers and light my Bunsen burners... Any volunteers?

7 comments:

  1. Would I be hourly or salary?

    It's important to know. It's tax season.

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  2. Looks like the good work of a mad food scientist is working! I hope you share the results!

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  3. I know how you feel about the citrus. I feel like I've done everything I can do, and I still have leftover citrus. Meyer lemons, Mandarin oranges, kumquats. Even pineapple...but I don't know- is that considered citrus?

    I might try making preserved lemons, but I like the idea of making a flavored vodka. Meyer lemon vodka?

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  4. I love doing this sort of thing. I made my own brandies and limoncello this year. This summer I really want to get into the whole canning thing .

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  5. I would certainly rinse beakers and light Bunsen burner for a taste of the flavored vodka. I might even give you a massage as a bonus. I'm extra zealous you know. :-)
    Great use for the citrus. Me like.

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  6. I have loved Blood Oranges since I discovered them while going to school in Rome in the 80's. These oranges seemed so exotic for a boy from a small town in Idaho. A strong dollar and a weak Lira made the trip all the better.

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  7. Good luck with the infusions..

    I've just bottled my first batch of lemoncello and sampled it quite heaviliy --delicious.

    egullet is a surprisingly good resource for various alcohols.

    As for meyer lemons, word on the street is they lack "oomph" in the infusion world --many reports of subpar meyer lemon lemoncello's.

    Next up a batch of pomegranate rafia and vin d'orange (once I remember where I hid my vanilla beans.. sigh). Scouring Vancouver for a source of green walnuts for june, for a batch or nine of nocino as well with no such luck so far.

    Keep up the good work.

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