Southern Comfort was first produced in 1874 by Irish bartender Martin Wilkes Heron (1850–1920), the son of a boat-builder. Heron began with good-quality bourbon and would add: “An inch of vanilla bean, about a quarter of a lemon, half of a cinnamon stick, four cloves, a few cherries, and an orange bit or two. He would let this soak for days. And right when he was ready to finish, he would add his sweetener: he liked to use honey.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Southern_Comfort
Peggy Richardson’s mother has worked very hard over the years to buy thoughtful gifts for her son-in-law, Peggy’s husband Geoff Clay. She has tried so hard, that she has actually tried too hard. She knit him a sweater that didn’t fit, so he donated it. She bought him a case of de-alcoholized beer that he used to kill garden pests. She bought him collectible stamps, but he doesn’t collect stamps, so he gave them to Peggy for her collection. Then there was the gold-plated toothbrush that now works perfectly for the dog.
A few years ago mom-in-law thought she found just the right thing and picked him up a large bottle of Southern Comfort at the duty-free shop. It was so big and heavy it took two hands to carry. Sadly, some things never change. Geoff doesn’t like Southern Comfort.
Now, here’s the problem. Liquor can’t be donated, it won’t kill many garden pests and it shouldn’t be given to the dog, so Peggy & Geoff decided the best thing to do with it was to serve it to friends and cook with it. When Peggy added it to cranberry sauce, Geoff loved it! He loved is so much he bragged about it and now people request it. Peggy and Geoff have finally finished off that bottle, but it took them 4 years!
When Peggy and Geoff serve the sauce at family dinners, the adults enjoy the fresh cranberry taste and the kids giggle because they think they’re eating something sneaky.
Peggy likes to pour the sauce into gift sized mason jars. She adds the Southern Comfort just before she puts the lid on it, then she tops it with a bow and a tag. It keeps really well in the fridge for several weeks and smells wonderful when opened.
They have given several jars to Peggy’s mom and her dad likes to spread it on toast. He claims it goes well with kippers!
“Comfort and Joy” Cranberry Sauce
1 12 ounce/340 gram bag fresh or frozen cranberries
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
3 ounces Southern Comfort
1. In a sauce pan, mix together cranberries, water and sugar. Boil on high heat until the sugar dissolves and the cranberries soften and pop. Stir and press all the berries until they’re all popped.
2. Let the sauce cool and thicken.
3. Add the Southern Comfort, stir and serve immediately.
• • • • •
Peggy specializes in books, ebooks and publishing. She helped me a lot when I was writing my first book, “Magnetic Real Estate Photography.” Peggy’s website is www.WizardofeBooks.com.
Peggy Richardson tells me that she has a lot more family dinner stories, but most of then end in the emergency room, so I didn’t ask any more questions.