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Second Day of Christmas Gift

The second installment of Twelve Days of Christmas Gifts from the Kitchen.

On the second day of Christmas
My true love gave to me:
Cranberry Citrus Vodka
and a bottle of Tomato Dust

This crimson cranberry vodka is easy to make, just a little time-consuming because you must poke each cranberry to open it up so it will impart its goodness into the vodka. But it is time easily spent.  I used a wooden skewer and did the chore while I watched television. I was done in no time.

Make whatever quantity you want, but I can share with you that 3-pounds of fresh cranberries, 2 lemons, 2 limes, 3 tablespoons sugar, and a 1.75-liter bottle of vodka will make three 1-liter bottles of Cranberry Citrus Vodka.

You need to put this together at least 2 weeks before you plan to use it or give it away. When giving as a gift, it would be ever so thoughtful to include a Crantini recipe card with your gift. The recipe for the Crantini is at the end of the post.

Cranberry Citrus Vodka


Use a wooden skewer to poke a hole through each cranberry. Place cranberries about 1/3 way up in a 1-liter decorative bottle of your choice.

Use a vegetable peeler or paring knife to cut the peel of 1 lemon and l lime. Place half of the peels from both citruses into the bottle on top of the cranberries. Top with more cranberries, filling until the bottle is about 2/3 full.

Top with the remaining citrus peels. Add more cranberries, until the bottle is just over 3/4 full.

Add 1 tablespoon sugar to the 1-liter bottle.

Use a funnel to fill the bottle with vodka, nearly to the top. Seal the bottle and give it a gentle shake and swirl. Keep in a cool dry place for 2 weeks or up to 2  months. Shaking and swirling the bottle every other day or so for the first week.

I need to add a little something here – The cranberries will soak up a bit of the vodka as it sits… top the bottle off with more vodka as that happens. I only had to top off mine once, but if you need to do it a couple of times, do so!  Thanks to my sweet friend, Tram, for bringing it to my attention and thereby reminding me to tell all of you! xoxo

After the second week, strain the berries and zest out of the vodka and bottle for gift giving. If you would like to add a few of the berries back to the gift bottles, be sure to attach a tag that says to strain out the berries before serving.

The reason for this is that leaving the berries in the vodka shortens the vodka’s shelf life. They could rise to the top, become exposed to the air, and become moldy. Although they look pretty for gift-giving, they need to be removed within a few weeks after the initial infusing period.


1/2 ounce Grand Marnier
2 ounces Cranberry Citrus Vodka
4 ounces cranberry juice

Pour all ingredients into a martini shaker that is filled with ice. Shake vigorously. Strain into a chilled martini glass and garnish with a twist of lemon or lime.

Makes 1

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1 Amy Kilpatrick { 11.20.12 at 10:46 AM }

Yummm! I’m so doing this!!

2 Tram Mai { 11.20.12 at 1:22 PM }

Love this gift idea!! And it’s sooo pretty!

3 Kim { 11.21.12 at 12:00 AM }

I have the cranberries and the vodka… It’s done !

4 Rita { 11.21.12 at 5:50 PM }

Funny – I’m drinking my homemade cranberry vodka with lemonade right this minute!

5 Linda Hopkins { 11.21.12 at 9:52 PM }

Rita, that just makes me smile! Happy Thanksgiving to you and you beautiful family. xoxo

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