Is it too early to give you homemade/DIY holiday gift ideas?
I’d normally say yes, but this will take you at least a month to make. You can start it now, and have it ready for holiday gifts!
I got really into the whole “homemade” gifts thing last year, and made this for some friends and family. I kinda think homemade gifts are the best. I mean, someone spending a ton of their time to make you something they think you’ll like? That’s the most special type of gift, in my opinion.
Infused liquors are a great gift because they are relatively easy, and usually always a gift that pleases! But like I said, it’s going to take some time. If you can plan enough ahead of time (which is usually SOOOOO not me…I’m like President of the procrastinator club), you’ll end up with an amazing gift!
This bourbon is extra amazing, because not only is it infused with warming spices (cloves, star anise, allspice, cinnamon, and even peppercorns!), but there is real, dehydrated pumpkin in there!
I dehydrated my pumpkin in my actual food dehydrator that I own (you can get one for like $50 on Amazon), but you could also do it in your oven (like in the original recipe).
As you can see in the photos, before and after the two to three week soak, the pumpkin looks quite a bit different. It plumps itself back up again in the liquor. I’ve actually heard of people then pureeing this, and using it in recipes in place of regular pumpkin puree, but I myself have never done it.
I packaged up my finished bourbon in some adorable glass bottles that I found at The Container Store, and then made some quick and easy labels using the labels and templates from The Paper Source. Then I tied some cute little note cards (also from Paper Source) to them with some twine, with how to enjoy it.
As for how to drink the finished bourbon, it actually is just great over ice. I’m not one to really enjoy just straight liquor, but with the sweet pumpkin, and enough mellowing time, this is incredibly tasty as a sipper. I can’t say I’ve had it any other way, but I imagine it would make a superb Old-Fashioned, and would incredible in a Bourbon Fizz!
Yield: 1 quart (4 cups)
- 1 or 2 sugar pie pumpkins
- 5 cinnamon sticks
- 2 tsp whole black peppercorns
- 2 tsp ground allspice
- 2 star anise
- 1 tsp whole cloves
- 4 cups of your favorite bourbon (I like Knob Creek and Maker's)
for the pumpkin:
- Cut your pumpkin(s) in half; scoop out the goop and seeds and discard them. Cut into 1/2" slices.
- Arrange the slices in your dehydrator so that no pieces are overlapping. Set your dehydrator to your fruit/veg setting (usually like 135 degrees), and allow to dehydrate overnight. You want the pumpkin slices to have shriveled up a bit, and be quite crisp!
for the bourbon:
- Add all of your ingredients (including the dehydrated pumpkin) into a large airtight container (I used a large beverage container, specifically one of these.) Stir everything up, then allow to sit in a cool, dark place for 2-3 weeks.
- Line a fine mesh strainer with cheesecloth, and set over a bowl. Strain the infused bourbon into the bowl, and discard the spices and pumpkin pieces.
- Package your bourbon into desired containers, then allow to sit and mellow for an additional 2-3 weeks before drinking!
recipe from here
P.S.—I honestly don’t even plan to have so many pumpkin recipes, and I’m laughing so hard because I apparently just can’t help myself 😛