If you want a golden rule that will fit everybody, this is it: Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful. ~ William Morris

13 July, 2018

Making the Rumptopf

It's been quite a long time since I've made it.  About seven or eight years I'd say.  I was unable to place an exact date for the origination of this delicacy but it has been enjoyed in Germany for centuries.  Rumtopf roughly translates as "rum pot" and this method of preserving the harvest of summer fruits is not only practical but delicious.

In my research I've read many conflicting requirements.  One says absolutely no blueberries, others say go ahead, it will simply darken your rumptopf.  One says cherries can be pitted or not.  One says they absolutely must be pitted.  One says don't add blackberries. One says it's fine.  I would say the only requirement is that you use a high proof alcohol, and enough sugar and really, no worries. 

It does not need to be refrigerated and neither do I put a weight on mine, but some people insist that you should.  I have a special crock for sauerkraut that has a lid designed to be filled with water at the brim which keeps out air.  I stir mine every couple of days (gently so as not to break up the fruit but to dissolve the sugar).  I'm sure that someone will say don't do that, and someone else will say of course you should do that.  The recommended sugar is half the weight of the fruit in layers.  So a layer of strawberries, half the weight of sugar, a layer of raspberries, another layer of sugar, etc.

So far it contains a quart of unbelievably fresh strawberries, a quart of sweet and sour cherries, a pint of raspberries and a pint of wild black raspberries.  I'll be heading to the farm market tomorrow to see what I can add next.

I splurged this year and used an artisanal, overproof rum.

By October it is considered "done" and should rest until the first taste at Advent.  And then it will be enjoyed and gifted at holiday time. 

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