Skip buying flavored vodkas and make your own. Summer is the ideal time to visit your farmstands and find the freshest, most beautiful fruit. Simply add the vodka of your choice, steep, put in the darkest corner of your refrigerator, and by the holidays you will have a moonshine that your friends and family will rave about.

This moonshine is wonderful served as a liqueur, over desserts, with roasted meats or place a container of the boozy cherries in a bowl at a dinner party and let guests nibble on them. They are like edible cocktails. Just warn folks about the pits!

If desired, feel free to get creative with your moonshine. This recipe can serve as your base and you can work from there. Some people like to add orange peels or whole spices. Some add sugar for a more dessert-type liqueur. Others like to migrate over to blueberries, strawberries, etc.

TIP: I like to keep pits in the cherries for this recipe. The pits add a nuanced “almond” flavor to the moonshine.

TIP: Any vodka will do. It’s up to you. Potato, grain, local, high end, mass-produced…I’ve tried several formats and they all work well. It is a personal preference.

Preservation method: Preserved in alcohol

Difficulty level: Easy

Cherry Moonshine

1 lb Bing cherries, stemmed and pricked with a toothpick (one or two times on each cherry)

1 750 ML vodka

Find a large container that will hold a bottle of vodka with a pound of cherries. OK to evenly divide into two containers if easier. Place prepared cherries in container.

Pour vodka on over cherries. Cap or place lid on container and refrigerate for six months. Date container as it is easy to forget when you’ve prepared it. Taste along the way if desired.

You can serve this strained and “as is” for a sharper taste OR strain and add a little sugar to your liking for an after-dinner moonshine.