Photo by Yves Remedios
Cider merchant in the port of Honfleur, Normandy

Taking inspiration from the know-how and traditions of Normandy, offer your guests something unique with these ideas for home-made apperitifs:

Quarante quatre: (forty four)

Simplicity at it’s best and a great digestif. Impress your Norman neighbours and/or friends by offering them an after-dinner Calvados homemade liquor.

You will need:
1 litre of Calvados
1 orange
44 sugar lumps
44 cloves
44 coffee grains

and 44 days of patience!

– Pour the Calvados into a large Kilner jar with 44 sugar lumps and 44 coffee grains.
– Stick the 44 cloves into an orange and add to jar.
– Wait at least 44 days before tasting.(Quarante quatre will, however, keep for centuries in the Kilner jar)

Alternatively, you could make your own apéritifs…..

Vin de framboises/Vin de mûres

– Again, in a Kilner jar, place 1 litre of Calvados with fruit – raspberries/blackberries (enough to fill up to one third of the jar)
– Add about 40 sugar lumps and close the jar.
– From time to time over the next few weeks, turn the jar so that the sugar is mixed through.
– After a couple of months, this may be served as a ‘digestif’ or….you could strain the mixture and add 4 litres of average quality white wine. ( ‘plonk’ is not advisable) and pour into wine bottles. Cork and store until use.

Pommeau
If you haven’t tasted Pommeau, go out and treat yourself to a bottle. This is what Normandy’s all about. A mixture of Calvados and apple juice or cider, served chilled, Pommeau is a great apple apéritif.
Otherwise, you could serve it at dessert with a warmp apple apple pie or pudding.

A la vôtre!

With thanks to Sinéad Allart, www.wildekitchen.net
Photo by Yves Remedios

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