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Today I found a nice Rumtopf jar from Alsace at a garage sale, and I'm ready to start. I have these guidelines that I can follow, but if any of you are rumtopf makers and want to advise me, I'd really appreciate it. Right now there are strawberries, and the cherries are just beginning, so I want to get going as soon as possible.

I'm especially wondering what kind of rum is best to use, although I'm assuming that a light rum is called for here, or even if some other alcohol would be as good or better.

Edited by Abra (log)
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We used to make Rumtopf when I was a kid. The key is adding the fruits when they are at there seasonal peak. We always started with strawberries and then went right down the line (raspberries, blackberries, plums, peaches....etc) until the apples were ready. The last thing would always be the pineapple. We always tried to add the same amount of fruit in each layer, would add a handful or two of sugar and then cover it with rum by about 1/2 to 1 inch. As for the Rum we just used white Bacardi. We would usually be down adding fruit in order to let it sit about 2-3 months until Christmas time. Big thing is remembering to keep the rum level over the top of the fruit. I hope this may help you a little bit.

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Thanks! I've started with cherries from our tree, but as soon as the sugar dissolved they started to float. I guess the specific gravity of the sweet liquid is too high for them to stay under. So now that they're floating and lots of their red color has leached into the rum they're turning brown. Were you able to get your fruit to keep its original color, or is browning inevitable?

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Wow - this sounds wonderful. It would be like an infusion of Spring and Summer just when it is needed!

I do have a crock that will do nicely. I'm guessing that the fruit should be weighted so that it will not float and spoil? Some of those fruits listed will certainly float with no provocation at all - I think.

Looking for advice here. Something new to spring on the family this holiday season. I love it!

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Fruit will float at times. The best thing to do is to find a plate that will keep the fruit submerged.

As for the browning that will happen with oxidation as well as the alcohol bleeding colors from the fruit. The only thing I can think of is maybe pretreating the fruit in some ascorbic acid (Vitamin C). This may help to prevent discoloration. I know it works in canning. Hope this may help :smile:

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Today I found a nice Rumtopf jar from Alsace at a garage sale, and I'm ready to start.  I have these guidelines that I can follow, but if any of you are rumtopf makers and want to advise me, I'd really appreciate it.  Right now there are strawberries, and the cherries are just beginning, so I want to get going as soon as possible.

I'm especially wondering what kind of rum is best to use, although I'm assuming that a light rum is called for here, or even if some other alcohol would be as good or better.

I made the last rumtopf years ago and the ingredients have been for a 3 liter pot.

250 g strawberries

250 g peaches peeled and diced

250 g cherries, stones removed

250 g red currants

250 g plums, stones removed

250 g Abricots, peeled and diced

750 g sugar

0,7 liters rum 54%

I added the fruits at their seasonal peak and let sit the rumtopf until december 25th. Apples and blackberries don't become soft that's why I can't recommend to use it for rumtopf fruits.

H.B. aka "Legourmet"

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  • 1 month later...

This sounds wonderful; I have a saurkraut pot I'm not using so I think I'll try to make some this year. If I'm understanding correctly, you just layer the fruit as it becomes available and let it ferment, is that correct? You don't mascerate it?

Off the top of my head I think this would be terrific on ice cream, or as a killer cheesecake topping, or even with bread pudding. But never having had it before, are there other uses I'm overlooking?

Thanks.... :smile:

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I've never made rumtopf, but I've made something very similar, vieux garcon, which is layers of seasonal fruit preserved in brandy and sugar. I was told the preserve is called vieux garcon, or "bachelor," because it resembles a bachelor's abode: everything thrown on top of everything else, and nothing cleaned up (at least by French housewife standards).

I made my preserve with cherries, apricots, plums, peaches and nectarines. I could have gone on and added in grapes, pears and apples thru the fall, but I got busy by midsummer and forgot about it. My advice is to add decent tasting liquor. I was told I could use cheap brandy (and I did), but a better quality brandy (less alcohol-y tasting) would have made a big difference in flavor--it would have been worth it, IMO. I was also told to choose ripe and unblemished fruit, and if necessary, choose the firmer underripe fruit rather than overripe fruit. Once the most recently added fruit has been sitting in the jar for a month, you can dig in and start eating. Yum!

I especially liked this preserve over ice cream. You can serve it with poundcake or biscotti, too. The fruits all taste different when they're likkered up and it's fun to compare them. In my preserve, the apricots in brandy were fantastic, the peaches surprisingly less so. A little of this fruit mix goes a long way, and I ended up with much more preserve than I knew what to do with. Next time I'll buy some pretty jars and give it away as gifts.

ETA: The notes to my recipe say that at first the fruits will float on top, but as they absorb sugar they will sink to the bottom of the jar. I don't remember trying to weigh down the fruit so it would be submerged. I decided to be authentic and made this recipe in casual bachelor mode.

Edited by djyee100 (log)
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It's going well. The cherries gave all their color to the liquor, which is now an appetizing red. I recently added apricots, and am thinking of adding some currants next. Mine's kind of "vieux garcon" as well, since I've used rum, brandy, and kirsch so far, much as a bachelor might.

I've got one big jar started and I too am not sure what I'll do with it all, but I also started half a dozen jam jars, with smaller bits of fruit, and those will definitely be for gifts.

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  • 2 months later...
It's going well.  The cherries gave all their color to the liquor, which is now an appetizing red.  I recently added apricots, and am thinking of adding some currants next.  Mine's kind of "vieux garcon" as well, since I've used rum, brandy, and kirsch so far, much as a bachelor might.

Two months on, and wondering how it is going? :smile:

I would love to seem some photos at some point.

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  • 11 years later...

Help.  I started a rumtopf.  I had it about a quarter full. I did not weight the top.  I made a cherry clafoutis.  I put some cherry syrup from the clafoutis in the jar.  The syrup had butter in it. When I opened the rumtopf today, there was a rush of gas.  Is it spoiled?  Can I kill my mother in law with it?  Do I have to throw it out?

 

Should I hang it up or try again?  I have a bunch of fruit right now, cherries, strawberries, figs.  Should I make sure to weigh it down this time?

 

P.S. I am no stranger to fruit + alcohol.

 

P.P.S.  It was expensive brandy in there.  Damnit.

 

Thank you.

I like to bake nice things. And then I eat them. Then I can bake some more.

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1 hour ago, Lindacakes said:

Can I kill my mother in law with it? 


How heavy is it? Most crocks of that sort could do the job, particularly if aimed carefully from a significant height.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I ended up throwing it out.  I did not want to kill anyone for Christmas.  That, and I am overextended in the garden/kitchen projects aspect of COVID anxiety.  I do lust for a proper crock, however.  I like my toys.

 

Big air gap was true of it.

 

 

I like to bake nice things. And then I eat them. Then I can bake some more.

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