On the weekends, I like to go out with the family. I sometimes take my daughters to the bouncy castle in St Pierre, and I take my wife to the town centre for some shopping. But it has been very rainy recently, certainly not the weather to be walking around town, or playing near the beach.
So, a rainy weekend activity for me is flavoring rum. It’s a local tradition! And very quick & easy.
First, decide your recipe. Think of what fruits are in season, and which fruits marry well together. Banana and vanilla is great! Or what about strawberries and mango? Whichever fruits you decide to use, make sure to avoid buying them from the supermarkets. Supermarkets tend to use chemicals to speed up the growth of their produce. I always find that the best fruits are found on roadside fruit and veg stands.
Once you have decided your mix, cut the fruits up so that they will be able to fit in the neck of the rum bottle. If your fruit has a peel, don’t forget to cut that off, or it will give your rum a nasty bitter taste. I’ve even tried rum with coffee beans. And, as a joke, one of my Créole friends let me try his chili rum. That was not my favorite to say the least!
Then, get your bottle of rum. (Charette, of course!) You can use a 1l bottle, but I prefer a 1.5l bottle because it looks nicer. (and there’s more of it!) Take out about a third of the rum, then add your fruits.
To finish off, add about 50ml of cane syrup. That part is very important; the sugar helps your ingredients to mix with the rum. It also increases the alcohol content.
Last week I tried my hand at making a bottle with passion fruit, melon and pitaya. Pitayas, as you probably know, have very little taste. But it makes the infused rum look great!
So now I’ve finished my bottle, it looks very pretty sat on my kitchen counter. I have to be patient though as it needs to infuse for about 6 months before it’s drinkable. My father-in-law is looking forward to tasting it. It’ll be a nice fruity toast at Christmas.
bouncy castle – chateaux gonflable
to flavour – parfumer
avoid verb+ing – éviter de verbe
tend to – avoir tendance à
speed up – accélérer
growth – croissance
roadside – bord de la route
cut the fruits up – découper les fruits
neck – coupeel – zeste
bitter – amer
chili – piment
a third of – un tiers de
try my hand – se faire la main
kitchen counter – comptoir de cuisine
drinkable – potable