Although the autumnal equinox is the thing that tells us when the season formally clicks from summer to fall, it’s never official in my house until I make my annual batch of Apple Pie Moonshine in early October. I’m not a recipe blogger, but due to demand I’ll share my recipe because it’s damn good but most of all it’s damn easy! Also, you really can’t mess it up.
I’m not precise in the kitchen and I’m even less so when I’m mixing drinks. Here are my rules of thumb when prepping a boozy concoction:
- If a little is good, more must be better. I always measure the alcohol on the heavy side.
- Sample as you go. Taking swigs of whatever alcohol you’re using is mandatory. It provides inspiration to deviate from the plan and make it your own.
- Have snacks handy… because everything is better with a snack.
- It usually turns out better when you have a partner in the kitchen with you. Bonus points if you let them be the DJ of the kitchen dance party that should break out if you’re following rule #2.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Half gallon of apple juice
- Half gallon of apple cider
- Big ol’ pot
- Cinnamon sticks (about 3-6)
- Everclear (500ml)
- Fireball Whiskey (optional)
- 1 cup sugar
Pour the juice, cider, sugar and cinnamon sticks into the big pot, making sure there’s enough room for it to boil. If you don’t have enough room it’s going to boil over the top and your kitchen will smell like burnt apple marshmallows, which I’ve done and honestly I don’t hate the smell, but you don’t want that sticky mess on your stove to clean up later.
Bring it to a rolling boil for about 10-15 minutes or long enough that you smell it wafting through your kitchen. I told you, I’m imprecise. Then reduce the heat to medium/low and just let it cook, doing its bubbly thing for about 45 minutes to an hour…. or until you sense in your soul that it’s been long enough.
I’m never going to get hired by Food Network.
Once you’re done heating your cauldron of juice, let it cool down and remove the cinnamon sticks. It can still be warm, sippably hot even, and then it’s time for the real magic. Stir in 500ml of Everclear, which is a little over 2 cups. Then I follow rule #1 and pour in a little more for good measure. Depending on how much adventure you’re up for, pour in about a cup of Fireball Whiskey. More or less, depending on your propensity to make bad decisions. I’m into fairly bad decisions, so I go for the whole cup if I have it on hand. If I don’t, a little more Everclear does the trick, which is also a bad decision but we are making moonshine after all.
Stir it all up until you’re satisfied and give it a taste. Success! You’re ready to sit in front of a fire pit with a big warm mug of Apple Pie Moonshine and enjoy the company of friends, or sit alone and let the warmth spread through you like a hug from that aunt that everyone knows is kind of a bad influence, but she’s a lot of fun so you tell her the secrets you keep from the rest of the family. No fire pit? Light a candle and dim the lights while you fire up whatever you’re binge watching on Netflix. There are much more complicated recipes out there that might taste better but mine is friggin’ delicious and the lazy way. Trust me, when you’re tipsy you won’t care.