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Blackberry Cordial

1 pt Blackberries
2 Strips of orange peel, pith removed
1/4 ts Ground cloves
1 1/2 c Vodka
1 1/2 c Brandy
2/3 c Sugar
1/3 c Water
1/2 ts Glycerin (found in drugstores)

Put the blackberries into a shallow dish and lightly crush them with a fork.

Transfer the berries and their juice to a 1-quart Mason jar. Add the orange peel, cloves, vodka, and brandy. Seal the jar and shake it to mix. Set the jar aside in a cool, dark place for 4 weeks. Strain the mixture through a fine sieve into a 4-cup glass measuring cup, pressing down on the fruit with a wooden spoon to extract as much fluid as possible. Discard the solids, and rinse the sieve and the Mason jar thoroughly. Fit the sieve with a damp coffee filter and strain the liquid back into the jar. Combine the sugar and water in a small saucepan. Heat for 5 minutes over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until the sugar dissolves, leaving a clear syrup. Remove the pan from the heat and cool to room temperature. Add the syrup and the glycerin to the jar. Reseal the Mason jar and shake gently to blend. If you wish, transfer the liqueur to decanters *. The Blackberry Cordial should be ready to drink in 2 or 3 days and has a shelf life of 2 to 3 months.

YIELD: 3 cups

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