Friday, January 11, 2013

How not to make Chocolate Vodka

Note to self: this blog is getting seriously neglected; I must try harder. So my New Year’s resolution is to keep it up-to-date.

Today I was given a nice new recipe – for chocolate vodka. It sounded too good to resist. Since I had to go shopping anyway, I added to my shopping list one bottle of vodka (cheap) and some Mars bars. In the supermarket I found a suitably cheap bottle of vodka, brand Gorbachev, and a five pack of Mars bars. Once home I made my preparations. The Mars bars had to be chopped up into small pieces. Then they had to be melted. After that they had to be incorporated into the vodka. The chopping up went fine. The melting went fine. Then I think I added a splash too much vodka. The incorporation didn’t go as planned. Some of it mixed in quite well. Unfortunately I ended up with quite a few chunks of un-melted sticky chocolate. Hmmmm. So, I fished out the chunks and put them into another bowl. Back into the microwave with them. Out again, pour into the vodka. Mistake. Later I learned what I had done wrong, but at that stage I didn’t think it through properly.

So here I was, with a bowl full of brown liquid and lumps of solid caramel chocolate. I fished out the lumps again and put them back in the microwave. Repeated the process. Got the same result. Now when I was in the supermarket, beside the normal Mars bars, I had noticed some special edition caramel Mars bars. Having been unable to resist them, I had a spare pack of Mars bars. The recipe had said 5 to 6 Mars bars. By now I estimated that I had incorporated probably three of them into the vodka while I had a number of lumps of solid Mars bar that weren’t going to be mixed in whatever I did. So out of the cupboard I got the caramel Mars bars. I chopped a couple of those up, put them in a clean bowl, and into the microwave they went. Then the phone rang. I answered it. Another mistake. Well, now I’m going to a hen weekend in the Herz mountains later in the year. A friend of mine is getting married near the end of May. And the phone call was inviting me to a hen weekend. It wasn’t very long phone call, but long enough. There was a nasty smell emanating from the microwave. Two caramel Mars bars were beyond melted. A revolting, smelly, black mess lurked at the bottom of my bowl. The dog looked very unamused and moved as far away from the microwave as she could. I opened the window. I turned on the extractor. I got out two more caramel Mars bars. I broke them into small pieces. I put them in a clean bowl. I put them in the microwave. (Note to self: do not start your sentences every time with the word I). Monitoring the microwave carefully, I ensured that these Mars bars melted nicely and I took them out. This time I did things slightly differently. Instead of putting these new Mars bars straight into my vodka mixture, I poured a very small amount of vodka into the Mars bars. At last I had found the way to succeed. I carefully stirred the vodka into the melted chocolate and lo and behold I had a vodka chocolate mix. This I poured into my previous mixture. Somehow I had done it. Along the way there was a lot of licking of spoons and crunching up bits of caramel chocolate that was of no use in the vodka. And now I had four bowls, one of which contained a brown alcoholic mixture and three of which contained various lumps of chocolate. The worst lump was the burnt one. It had solidified in the bottom of the bowl and was not going to come out without a fight. The other two bowls, to be strictly accurate, just had smears of chocolate on them. They went in the washing-up bowl. Next, I had to pour the mixture back into my vodka bottle. My funnel came out of the cupboard and I inserted it into the neck of the bottle. Picking up the biggest bowl, and leaning things over another of the bowls, I poured. I did better than I had expected I would. There was only a small puddle of chocolate vodka on the work surface. The bottle filled, there was a little remaining in the bowl. This was poured into a glass for later. The bottle of vodka went into the freezer where it has to stay for 24 hours before going into the fridge. Later on this evening I shall get out some ice and sample a glass of chocolate vodka.

My next dilemma is whether or not to introduce my friends to my chocolate vodka. If I do, it will probably not last very long at all. If I don’t, it will be only my liver that suffers. Apparently you can use all sorts of chocolate to make this vodka. But since much of the chocolate available here is not very nice and the chocolate that is tends to be expensive, Mars bars seemed like a good bet. Although I suspect that the caramel did make my task a little trickier. That’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it. At least now I have one bottle of tasty chocolate chocolate vodka (I may not drunk my glassful yet but I have licked my fingers a bit) to show for my efforts. Time to get something to eat before I drink any of it.

Finally, in keeping with my New Year’s resolution, I promise I really shall try to blog again soon. Little things like work keep getting in my way. But that’s no excuse is it? A happy New Year to you all and good luck if you want to try this recipe.