‘Tis the season for apples, spice, and everything nice (Fall tailgating)! Southern Living Magazine is a staple in our family, just like the morning paper. I remember my mother, grandmother DaGa, and aunts always had stacks of the magazine and were excited to try new recipes, especially the seasonal ones. So the other day I was perusing the September 2012 issue of Southern Living and found a fabulous recipe for Apple Pie-Infused Bourbon. I was preparing for an upcoming tailgate for a Virginia Tech football game and decided to give it a shot (no pun intended). I mean what’s more Southern than Bourbon? So although this is not a family recipe, it was definitely share-worthy and I thought I would review it for you. I was skeptical at first if it tasted really like apple pie, but let me tell you… it’s delicious!
1 Golden Delicious Apple (I used a Matzo which is a cross between a Golden Delicious and Granny Smith)
2 Cinnamon sticks (I used 3, to try but wished I had stuck to 2 like the original recipe)
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 750 milliliter bottle of bourbon (I used Jim Beam)
1/4 cup simple syrup (I used 1 cup organic whole cane sugar and 1/2 cup water, you can use regular sugar)
First, chop the apple.
Measure out the nutmeg and cinnamon sticks.
Put in a 1 quart jar or glass container (I just happened to have this huge old mason jar from my grandmother house!)
Then, pour in the bourbon….
Once all the bourbon is in the jar, you’re going to let it all marinate for 4 days… yum! Cover your jar with a top, I just covered mine with aluminum foil and stored it at room temperature.
On the fourth day, make your simple syrup by combining 1 cup of sugar with 1/2 cup of water in a sauce pan. Mine looks brown because I used cane sugar, it will look much lighter if you use regular white sugar. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Boil for 1 minute or until sugar has dissolved. Remove the syrup from heat and let cool for about 30 minutes.
While the simple syrup is cooling, run the bourbon concoction through a strainer. I’m sure you could keep the apple to add, kind of like sangria, but beware it could be deadly if you know what I mean!
After you’ve strained the cinnamon sticks and apple out, pour 1/4 cup of the simple syrup into the mix. I honestly misread the recipe and put in the whole amount that I made (which is 3/4 cup). It was very sweet and tasted only like apple pie, not very much like bourbon, so I recommend following the actual directions and only putting in 1/4 cup! Mix together and then for the sake of travel, I poured it back into the Jim Beam bottle.
Southern Living suggests putting it in cute glass containers and giving as gifts which I am TOTALLY doing for Christmas for my friends. They even have printable labels! Overall, my husband, friends and I give this recipe an A+! As long as you plan ahead (since it takes time for the flavors to marinate) this is a super easy recipe!
I’m sure you can drink it on the rocks if you’re that type of person, but we mixed in 1 shot of Apple Pie-Infused Bourbon with about 6 oz. Ginger Ale over ice. Garnish with a thin slice of apple if you’d like. They also suggest mixing it with sparking cider which I definitely plan on trying. Cheers!