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Agriturismo Stazzi La China B&B Sardinia
The La China articles - The liqueur of Myrtle
In ancient Greece the myrtle was sacred to Venus and therefore, in the literary tradition, it was assumed to be the symbol of the love and the loving poetry. The Myrtus communis of the family Mirtacee, says also "mortella", typical of the Mediterranean stain, has oval-acute leaves, opposite, shiny, aromatic, white and perfumed flowers and fruits to aromatic berry.
The myrtle is used both in perfumery and natural pharmacology for the appreciated oil that possesses astringent and anaesthetic ownership, but also in the kitchen, to aromatise roast and meats. And therefore myrtle is a product that has a relevant position the Sardinian economy.
A particular use of the myrtle makes it famous to most of the people, the production of the liqueur of Myrtle.
However not many know that the liqueur of myrtle can be drawn out for infusion both from the berries that from the leaves of the plant. In Sardinia in fact the liqueurs of myrtle can be tasted in two ways , that traditional from the intense red colour, at times ruby if filtered, and that denominated white, even if kind in the home recipes has a clear green colour some opaque, tied up to the strong presence of chlorophyll.
The liqueur of red, even if rather sweet myrtle, preserve that aftertaste vaguely of laurel (the Mirtacees and the Lauracees are of the same family), while in the white myrtle the bitter taste is decidedly more definite, and you/he/she has marked digestive characteristics.
The holiday farms in Sardinia often offer the liqueur that must be served rigorously extracted by the freezer to the guests, like limoncello is also served.
L' Agriturismo Sardinia Stazzi La China doesn't make exception, having on its ownership of 40 hectares a vast extension where the precious plant grows luxuriant.
The harvest of the berries of myrtle is effected during the period that has gone since December to January, period during which the berries are particularly mature, while the harvest of the leaves pearl production of the white myrtle happens in spring.
The production of the liqueur of red myrtle
For the production of the liqueur of traditional, or red myrtle, the picked berries must be rinsed and private of the possible remaining residues from the process of manual harvest, therefore harvest in infusion in pure alcohol to 95 degrees for one period that has gone since 15 a 30 days, in operation than intense the infusion is desired.
Passed the period of infusion, the berries, before being dropped out, they have to be pressed for releasing the absorbed alcohol. For the liqueur of red myrtle you can clean up the liqueur, doing that with the paper used in kitchen for covering the food, or with a strainer from the very thin sweaters, type those used for the flour, but this is optional.
Then prepare him a syrup of water and sugar that, once stiepidito, the private alcohol of the residues of infusion is added to allowed to rest for a week in fresh place and shaded, before to be placed in bottles. The doses for the preparation of the liqueur of red myrtle are:
The doses must be increased or you proportionally decrease in operation of liqueur's quantity desired.
The production of the liqueur of white myrtle
The trial for the production of white myrtle is identical, it only differs in the dosing and in the fact that cleaning up the liqueur before to be consumed is necessary to eliminate the excess of chlorophyll that it would also change the taste characteristics in the time.
For the recipe:
The variations and the recipes in the production of the liqueur of myrtle are innumerable, and com is unbelievable in the procedure, apparently simple and immediate, it is enough to change a detail to have big variations in the taste. To have a good liqueur of myrtle, doesn't remain then but to try.