Thursday, July 26, 2012

Vanilla-Rhubarb Liqueur


It is time to start my own stash of infused liqueurs. I have been intrigued by the variety of fresh new cocktails I see on menus and read about in magazines; liqueurs steeped in cucumber, mint, citrus and berries. How fun to have a selection of homemade concoctions to choose from when mixing up a drink! I can wait no longer.

I jumped in and learned that the process is really quite simple - chop up your chosen fruit, herb and/or spice, plop it all into a jar of vodka and forget about it for two to three weeks.


Admittedly it is late in the season for rhubarb.  Inspiration struck me when I had some rhubarb stalks languishing in my fridge and I began pondering what to make with them.  A plump vanilla bean made its way into the mix, as well. While simple syrup is often added for some sweetness, I substituted a small amount of agave syrup with success. If you froze rhubarb or still have access to some stalks then I recommend throwing this all together and waiting patiently.


The clear vodka becomes a rosy red as the color seeps out of the rhubarb.  Tiny black specks of vanilla bean dot the surface and a fruity, vanilla scent escapes each time I open the jar, evoking rhubarb cobbler for me. I grabbed a couple of pretty cocktail glasses and headed outside where I proudly poured into each a splash of the first liqueur in my soon-to-grow stash. I topped them off with sparkling wine (any excuse for bubbles!).  I'm on my way, sipping in the backyard on a warm summer evening, contemplating the next infusion.

Vanilla-Rhubarb Liqueur
Makes 1 cup

1 vanilla bean, split in half lengthwise
1/2 pound rhubarb, diced (defrost if using frozen)
2 tablespoons agave syrup
1 cup vodka

In a large jar, muddle all of the ingredients together with the handle of a wooden spoon.  Cover and place in a room temperature spot.  Let the mixture sit for two to three weeks (mine infused for three weeks since I was out of town).  Strain over a sieve and discard the solids.  Store the liqueur at room temperature.

16 comments:

  1. So pretty! And I agree-any excuse for bubbles!

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    1. Thank you, Christina! We'll have to drink some bubbles together soon. Hope you're enjoying summer!

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  2. Vanilla-rhubarb sounds like a fabulous combination! I'd love to see how this works in a simple vodka tonic-style concoction. :)

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    1. Thanks, Eileen! I like your vodka-tonic suggestion and I'll happily mix up a couple this evening. Have a great weekend!

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  3. Sounds yummy! I only managed one bunch of rhubarb this year, so I'll have to remember this for next spring.

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    1. Thanks, Lauren! I hope you enjoy it when you have rhubarb again. Happy Friday to you!

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  4. This is OUTSTANDING!

    And I happen to have all the ingredients, so will definitely be making it tomorrow. Thank you!

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    1. My pleasure, Erina! I hope you like it and enjoy lots of summer cocktails. Have a wonderful weekend!

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  5. Yum! We did a couple of rhubarb gin infusions this year, I think my favorite was with orange and brown sugar. I like the sound of the vanilla and agave!

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    1. Hi Alicia - your infusion with orange and brown sugar sounds terrific! I'll have to add gin to my repertoire. I just saw that you have some amazing bourbon infusions, too...oh my. :)

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  6. Such a pretty colour, I am very much looking forward to some summer cocktails!

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    1. Thanks, Mairi! Summer cocktails are definitely something to dream about when it's cold outside. Snuggle up and stay warm!

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  7. This sounds great! I have never infused vodka myself, but have wanted to do this for quite some time now.
    Will definately be trying this one.
    Have tried rhubarb wine, and was very good.
    Thanks for this recipe!!

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    1. My pleasure! Rhubarb wine sounds lovely. I hope you enjoy this one!

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  8. Replies
    1. Hi Nisan, yes, you can use the same amount of sugar in place of the agave syrup. Honey would work well, too. I hope you enjoy it and I'm happy you stopped by!

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