Christmas Shrub -A Rum Spice Liqueur

"I've had this recipe for years and it comes from "The Caribbean Pantry Cookbook" by Steven Raichlen. It is best if made and stored a few weeks to a month, but can be drank right away. But be patient and let it age. My husband calls it 'nectar of the Gods'. It takes a little time to prep but worth it I assure you. Do not substitute ground spices, it will not turn out the same at all."
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Ready In:
2 gallons




  • Wash the fruits and remove the zest in strips, avoiding the white pith.
  • Combine the zests, cinnamon sticks, cloves, allspice, vanilla beans, 2 cups of sugar, and 2 cups of water in a large heavy saucepan.
  • Bring to a gentle boil, then reduce heat to lowest possible setting. Let the ingredients infuse for 30 minutes.
  • Strain the syrup into a large mixing bowl.
  • Combine the remaining 1 cup sugar and 1/2 cup water in the same large saucepan.
  • Cover the pan and bring mixture to a boil. Uncover the pan and cook the mixture over high heat until it turns golden brown or caramelizes -about 5 minutes.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and let cool 5 minutes.
  • Add 1 cup of rum to the caramel. BE CAREFUL -the mixture may splatter. When the splatter has subsided, return the pan to low heat stirring with a wooden spoon until the caramel has dissolved into the rum.
  • Add the caramel mixture and remaining rum to the syrup. (I found a large jar like you see in deli's for pickles I use for this). Whisk or in my case, shake the mixture. Pour into clean bottles or containers. Place in a cool dark place and allow to age. It will keep indefinitely.
  • I put this is pretty decorative bottles like you see for salad dressing and give as Christmas gifts. I had an uproar the one year I didn't make it.
  • Servings and yield are approximate, but about 2 gallons I'd guess. This is something you drink like a cordial or as a sipper. It is very strong!

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  1. nbptfoodie
    Excellent Recipe! We made it for Christmas Gifts (3 gallons of it) for more and a repat this year! It takes some time but it's worth it!
  2. ms_winn
    takes some time to make it, but it is reallly good. definatly worth it. and it just gets better the longer you let it sit. great recipe


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