Russians make a myriad of fruit liqueurs and brandies and take great pride in their recipes.
Their love of them can be seen in Chekhov’s The Siren, in which a character says, “I can tell you
truthfully… that home-made brandy is better than any champagne. After the first glass, your
sense of smell enlarges, envelops your whole being. It’s a great illusion. It seems to you that
you’re no longer sitting at home in your easy chair, but are somewhere in Australia, astride the
softest imaginable ostrich…” What more inducement could you need to make this?
Fills 1 x 2 litre (3½ pint) jar
© 2023 Diana Henry / Octopus Books · Reproduced with permission.
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Halve the plums and stone them. Layer them up in a 2 litre (3½ pint) jar with the sugar. Pour on
the alcohol, seal and shake the jar.
Leave to sit for a couple of months, shaking every so often. Scoop measures out of the jar, leaving
the plums, or strain through a muslin-lined nylon sieve and bottle. This keeps for two years.