When I got 1/2 bushel of peaches and needed to get them taken care of as quickly as possible, I turned to one of my favorite cookbooks for preserving ideas, The Fancy Pantry by Helen Witty. The second recipe I saw was for peach ratafia. What Georgette Heyer fan could pass up the chance to make ratafia? So in about six weeks, I'll let you know what we think.
1 cup granulated sugar
½ cup packed light-brown sugar
½ cup water
3 cups sliced peeled ripe peaches
Peach kernels (if you are able to get them out of the pits!)
1/8 teaspoon ground mace
1 quart good-quality brandy
1. Combine the granulated sugar, the brown sugar, and the water in a
saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil and boil the syrup briskly,
uncovered, for 3 minutes. Cool the syrup.
2. Put peach slices and the kernels into a 2 qt. glass jar or crock with a snug cover.
3. Stir the cooled syrup, the mace, and the brandy together until
they are completely mixed. Pour the mixture over the the peaches and
stir the whole business. Cover airtight. Set the containers aside for at
least a month and preferably 6 weeks. Stir or shake the contents once
in a while.
4. Strain the cordial through a fine-meshed sieve bottle it (if corking, use new corks only.)
Refrigerate the fruit.
From The Fancy Pantry by Helen Witty