This candy cane vodka tutorial came about when the need for a quick Christmas gift was inspired by one drunken night on a European bus tour. Confused? Intrigued? Read on…
‘Twas a week before Christmas and I was in a panic. I had no idea what to get for J’s dozen or so cousins – all in their twenties. If there is one thing I learned from his family gatherings, it is this: J’s cousins know how to have a good time. Luckily I had seen a blurb in last month’s Rachel Ray magazine about making flavored vodka.
I was first introduced to infused vodka while on a bus tour of Europe. We ended up in a vodka bar in Berlin (or was it Amsterdam… clearly I drank more than I thought). The shelves were lined with clear bottles, all with a little something extra added – jalapeno, skittles, gummy bears… So it really wasn’t much of a stretch for my imagination when I saw the Rachel Ray recipe for candy cane vodka. I tweaked it a bit, since I decided to use half-pint mason jars instead of a large liter bottle. This recipe makes a great Christmas gift for neighbors or friends, or works well if you just want to use up those left-over candy canes once Christmas has passed.
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Here’s what you’ll need to make Candy Cane Vodka:
- 36 full-size peppermint candy canes
- vodka – I used about 2.5 liters
- 2 mason jars – like this kind
- food processor
- ribbons and other doo-dads for decorating your jars
Run your jars through the dishwasher and dry thoroughly.
Crush three candy canes in a food processor until you have a powder with only a few small bits. I broke each candy cane into three pieces to get it to fit into my small food processor. When I removed the lid, a white cloud of pepperminty goodness rose into the air. J came home and commented from an entirely different level of the house how it smelled like candy canes. Yum!
Dump the crushed candy canes into the jar. Fill with vodka. Cover. Shake. That’s it. I gave each jar an initial shake and then another couple shakes over the next half hour – until the candy cane bits had completely dissolved.
Then came the decorating. I found red glitter candy cane gift tag decorations at Target. By some stroke of fate I had red glitter cardstock to match. I cut circles of cardstock to cover the lids of the jar. Ribbons went around the jars, and the glitter candy canes got hot glued on. Small circles of cardstock served as labels attached to the candy canes.
I took these cute little jars over to J’s parents’ house for Christmas. Many either did shots or just drank the stuff over ice. Either way, everyone agreed that my creation was pretty good and definitely didn’t taste like vodka. Success! I think next time I may add this to hot chocolate or eggnog.