Absinthe is the legendary liquor that reigned over the minds and hearts of most Europeans throughout the nineteenth century. Absinthe has wormwood and anise flavor. Absinthe was popular for its taste and the unique effects which were not much like other spirits. The drink has made a sensational comeback worldwide since the beginning of the twenty-first century. More and more people are curious about knowing 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 credited with the creation of absinthe. The doctor prescribed it as a digestive tonic and applied it to deal with 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 within the paintings of Pablo Picasso and Vincent Van Gogh. Many absinthe-recipe great artistes and writers were regular drinkers of absinthe and absinthe was an important part of the literary and cultural picture of nineteenth century Europe. As a result of specific 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 an effective comeback as many countries in europe have lifted the ban.
Absinthe recipe is fairy simple. It is served by steeping natural herbs in neutral spirit and distilling the items thus formed. Absinthe can be wine based or grain based. After distillation the distilled spirit is infused with additional herbs for flavor then filtered to obtain absinthe liquor. It’s a three step recipe.
Step one involves procuring the neutral spirit. Wine might be distilled to raise the alcohol concentration. The easy alternative is to apply vodka because it is readily available. The next step 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 blended with the neutral spirit and saved in a dark cool spot for a couple of days. The container that contains this mixture is shaken routinely. After a few days the mixture is strained and water is added. The amount of water added must be half of the volume of neutral spirit used.
The third step requires distilling the maceration. The distillation process is just like the one used in home distilled alcohol. During the distillation the liquid which comes out at the beginning and also the end is discarded.
The final step involves adding herbs like hyssop, melissa or lemon balm, and mint leaves. The mixture is periodically shaken and kept for a while. As soon as the color and flavor of the herbs gets into the mixture it is then filtered and bottled.
Absinthe has quite high alcohol content and should be drunk without excess. The herb wormwood is made up of thujone that is a mildly psychoactive substance and is considered to induce psychedelic effects if consumed in great quantity. Absinthe drinks are prepared making use of traditional rituals. Absinthe spoon and absinthe glass are used in the preparation of “the green fairy”, as absinthe is more popularly called. Like all drinks absinthe is an intoxicant and should be taken reasonably to relish its unique effects.