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Vodka Infusion - Figs and ???

The fig tree behind our shop is loaded with fruit. I intend to use some to infuse vodka. I am wondering if there is a complementary ingredient to include with the figs or should I keep it simple.

Any ideas?

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  1. You should infuse the figs into something darker, maybe an amber rum, or a bourbon. Or you could try adding some plums, apricots, blanched almonds, cloves...

    1 Reply
    1. re: aurorakat

      A bar in Boston infuses Maker's Mark with figs, Chinese cinnamon, and vanilla. Awesome stuff!

      1. I would use rum to infuse figs in, because ripe figs have so much sugar, they would tend to overwhelm the vodka. I'd play aroud with allspice, cinnamon, clove and cardamom, and use some vanilla as well. In the mean time will you share the figs?

        1. Try with both raw figs and oven roasted/caramelized ones. I second the use of a dark spirit like whiskey or rum, but the botanicals in gin may pair quite well. I made a few infusions using gin and they were much nicer than their vodka versions.

          2 Replies
          1. re: JMF

            just curious as too which gin you would use? Plymouth? Something light like bulldog?

            1. re: Icantread

              If I use gin, I use one that will bring in those great botanicals, not something light like Plymouth, or almost a vodka like Bulldog or Bafferts. Usually Gordons, because it is a nice, middle of the road gin, and at a great price. There's a reason it's the number one selling gin in the world.

          2. My thanks to each of you for your thoughts. I decided to use Mount Gay rum and infuse with figs, cinnamon stick, and vanilla bean.

            (I may still do a vodka with just a few figs and reduce the infusion time.)

            1 Reply
            1. re: MGZ

              Just pull out the cinnamon stick after a day or so. It can overwhelm the other flavors. I'd personally try with just the vanilla, and infuse cinnamon separately and blend it in later. Infused cassia (what we call cinnamon in the US) and real cinnamon, can get overpowering and even bitter real fast in infusions.

            2. Well, I strained the infusion yesterday. Wow, it was the best I've ever made. I took the cinnamon stick out on the 5th day. The figs and vanilla bean sat in the rum for three weeks.

              I sampled it neat and at room temperature. I sampled it a couple times more, just to be certain I hadn't misjudged it. I wish I had made more.

              Thanks, again to all of you for your input and advice.

              7 Replies
              1. re: MGZ

                So what exactly did you do? Quantity of each ingredient?

                1. re: davis_sq_pro

                  1 vanilla bean, sliced open. 2/3 of a stick of cinnamon. 10-12 fresh figs, cut in half.

                  I'm thinking of asking my wife to hide it from me so I will have some left for Thanksgiving.

                  1. re: MGZ

                    Thanks!

                    How much rum? And which Mount Gay did you use?

                    1. re: davis_sq_pro

                      This just as a side, I regularly make an infused rum with dried figs, raisins and dried apricots as well.
                      I actually use the cheapest caribbean rum I can find as the fruit adds plenty of character.

                      1. re: davis_sq_pro

                        1 liter bottle of the regular Mount Gay - I believe the label has the word "Eclipse" on it.

                  2. re: MGZ

                    ok, last night I made a litre each of fig-infused rum and bourbon with vanilla and cinnamon. tonight I'm going to do roasted fig vodka. we'll see how they turn out!

                    1. re: degan

                      I'm excited to hear what you think. The Mount Gay batch from last year was the nectar! I had tears in my eyes as we finished it after Thanksgiving dinner. I hope to start this year's batch soon.

                    1. re: invinotheresverde

                      Interesting . . . .

                      In vodka? Gin? What quantities/proportions? How long for each ingredient?

                      1. re: MGZ

                        Either.

                        I put about one third the amount of sage as figs and leave it in for a quarter of the time. It's great.

                        1. re: invinotheresverde

                          I am fascinated with the sage suggestion. Especially since I noticed that my dad has an abundance of it growing in his yard. I think ivino's Vodka-Fig-Sage is a must try.

                          Nevertheless, I am inclined to also try a tequila-sage soak. I think it needs a third note to round out the chord. This thread led me to a real find last year, so I suppose I'll try it again. Whaddaya think? Orange peel? Lime zest? Chiles?