Absinthe is the legendary liquor that ruled the hearts and minds of the majority of Europeans during the nineteenth century. Absinthe has wormwood and anise flavor. Absinthe was extremely popular for its taste plus the unique effects that were not much like other spirits. The drink has created a sensational comeback worldwide since the beginning of the twenty-first century. More and more people are curious about understanding the perfect absinthe recipe. But before we discuss the absinthe recipe, let’s become familiar with its rich history.
A French doctor Dr. Pierre Ordinaire is attributed with the development of absinthe. The doctor prescribed it as a digestive tonic and made use of it absinthe supreme to treat digestive complaints. Henri-Louis Pernod is credited with the very first commercial manufacture of absinthe in 1797 in Couvet, Switzerland. Later on in 1805 Pernod moved to a larger distillery as the demand for absinthe kept growing. Absinthe was the most popular drink in Europe and it rivaled wine, when at its peak. It has also appeared in the paintings of Pablo Picasso and Vincent Van Gogh. Many great artistes and writers were frequent drinkers of absinthe and absinthe was a significant part of the literary and cultural picture of nineteenth century Europe. As a result of certain misconceptions and ill founded rumors absinthe was banned generally in most of Europe and America for the majority of of the twentieth century. However, absinthe has produced a successful comeback as most European countries have lifted the ban.
Absinthe recipe is fairy simple. It is served by steeping natural herbs in neutral spirit and distilling the product thus formed. Absinthe could be wine based or grain based. After distillation the distilled spirit is infused with additional herbs for flavor then filtered to get absinthe liquor. It’s a three step recipe.
The initial step involves procuring the neutral spirit. Wine can be distilled to boost the alcohol concentration. The easy alternative is to try using vodka as it is easily available. Phase 2 involves including herbs like wormwood (Artemisia absinthium), green anise, fennel seed, angelica root, star anise, etc. These herbs are called as macerated herbs. These herbs are mixed with the neutral spirit and stored in a dark cool area for several days. The container made up of this mixture is shaken regularly. Immediately after days the mixture is strained and water is added. The amount of water added should be half of the quantity of neutral spirit used.
The next step calls for distilling the maceration. The distillation process resembles the one used for home distilled alcohol. Within the distillation the liquid that comes out in the beginning and the very end is discarded.
The last step involves adding herbs such as hyssop, melissa or lemon balm, and mint leaves. The amalgamation is periodically shaken and kept for a while. Once the color and flavor of the herbs enters the amalgamation it is then filtered and bottled.
Absinthe has quite high alcohol content and must be drunk sparingly. The herb wormwood consists of thujone which is a mildly psychoactive substance and is also thought to induce psychedelic effects if consumed in great quantity. Absinthe drinks are prepared making use of traditional rituals. Absinthe spoon and absinthe glass are widely-used in the preparation of “the green fairy”, as absinthe is adoringly called. Like several drinks absinthe is an intoxicant and should be taken sparingly to savor its one of a kind effects.