Homemade Quince Liqueur (Alessandra Vinciguerra) Recipe

Italian Quince Liquor, from correspondent Bob Beer, originally from Alessandra Vinciguerra, as given to the Mediterranean Garden Group

Grate the quince, put in a large glass bowl and mix with aquivite or grappa. Add bitter almonds, cinnamon, cloves and grated nutmeg. Cover tightly so the alcohol won't evaporate and set in a dark cupboard for 2 months.

Strain, discard the pulp and spices, and then filter the liquid again (pour through a double layer of coffee filters with a big wad of sterile cotton in the bottom). Drop by drop, the liquid will come out completely clear and transparent.

Apart, boil sugar with water until the sugar is completely dissolved. Cool. Then mix the cooled sugar syrup with the filtered alcohol liquor, bottle, and serve. Sip tiny glasses of this delicious liquor after dinner (with the excuse that it will help you to digest and prevent stomach acidity). In the summer it can be served over crushed ice. Mummmmmmmmm good.

[Yes the filtering is a pain in the butt, the recipe as I got it said to use coffee filters but they tended to clog after about 5 minutes, even after a preliminary filtering with surgical cotton. I confess to having said "to hell with it", though when I filtered one bottle that had sat for a long time, with the solids settled out, it did work. Made with grappa it was a bit too alcohol-less for me, or perhaps it's that a "large quince" in Turkey is larger than a "large quince" in Italy. They really are monstrous here when in high season, and I ended up adding more liquor to it to bring it up to where I wanted it. But it's really a wonderful one.

Not sure where to get bitter almonds in the US - they are the source of almond extract (ever notice that almond extract doesn't taste anything like normal almonds? It's not from normal almonds).

Units of measurement (unless stated otherwise)
1 cup = 8 ounces = 236ml
1 quart = 32 ounces = 944ml
1 tbsp (tablespoon) = 1/2 ounce = 15ml
1 fifth = 25.6 ounces = 750ml
1 tsp (teaspoon) = 1/6 ounce = 5ml
1 pint = 16 ounces = 472ml

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