In Praise of Fraise

(c) Leigh Beisch
You're walking through a field of grass dotted with wild strawberries. The ground is damp and uneven, a shifting carpet. You try not to tread on the treasured fruit, but every now and then you miscalculate, creating an invisible cloud of strawberry-scented air, and you thank the gods who grace us with gifts for our clumsiness. This liqueur is single-minded: It thinks of nothing but ripe strawberries, and in its simplistic innocence it sings sweetly.
 
  • 2 pints strawberries, hulled and sliced, or 1 1/2 pounds frozen strawberries, thawed
  • 1 1/2 cups Simple Syrup 
  • 1 fifth (750 ml/3 1/4 cups) vodka (80-100 proof)
Muddle the strawberries and simple syrup with a wooden spoon in a half-gallon jar. Stir in the vodka.
 
Seal the jar and put it in a cool, dark cabinet until the liquid smells and tastes strongly of strawberries, about 7 days.
 
Strain the mixture with a mesh strainer into a clean quart jar. Do not push on the solids to extract more liquid.
 
Seal and store in a cool, dark cabinet. Use within 1 year.
 
Santé! Perfect for sipping on a summer day, for spiking a Cosmo, for dabbing behind each ear.
Yield: 
Makes about 1 quart
  • When it comes to cooking sausage, it's all about heat management

    "If you're going to grill, you can mark it first on a hotter part of the grill," says Chris Ying, editor in chief of Lucky Peach and co-author of The Wurst of Lucky Peach. "Then move it to the cooler, indirect heat to finish cooking gently and slowly, and let all of those fats and everything break down inside of the sausage."

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Host Francis Lam wins multiple 2017 James Beard Media Awards

Host Francis Lam won several awards at the 2017 James Beard Foundation Media Awards for his work as food writer and cookbook editor.