Rumtopf is a very popular drink in Denmark and Germany. I recall my father making this when I was a girl and that it was a huge hit in the house. Of course my parents let me taste it and I liked the fruit although very strong, but I didn’t care for the rum liquid. It was much too strong for my young taste buds, however, that is not the case today. Today it is delicious, but don’t forget that this is straight flavored rum you are consuming and the wonderful fruit is loaded with alcohol. So beware when your enjoying this delicious Rumtopf.
Traditionally the Rumtopf is started in late spring and fruit is added during the summer as they come into season. However, since fruit is now available pretty much year-round you could start it at any time but ideally you want to follow the season for the best flavors. When you choose your fruit make sure they are not over-ripe. Small fruit that contain pits (like cherries) can either be pitted or the pits can be left in place for added flavor. Larger fruit need to be pitted and cut into bite size pieces.
The Rumtopf is typically made in a large stoneware pot that has a lid. I don’t have a Rumtopf pot so I used a large glass jar which worked out well except for the fact that I was not able to add very much fruit. My Rumtopf only had two kinds of fruit, cherries and mangoes and hindsight being 20/20 I would not choose mango again with other dark colored fruit because the darker fruit (cherries) give off color and ended up discoloring my beautiful yellow mango. Not esthetically pleasing, but delicious nonetheless. The other dilemma I had was that you want to store the Rumtopf in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight. Well it’s been such an extremely hot summer here in Virginia and our house has been comfortable, but not cool per se, so I choose to store it in the refrigerator to avoid too much fermentation.
Suitable fruit: Cherries, Mangoes, Plums, Pears, Peaches, Apricots, Nectarines, Pineapple, Raspberries, Strawberries, Gooseberries, Red Currants, Grapes
Fruit not suitable:
Banana (too soft)
Watermelon and Cantaloupe (too watery)
Citrus (too much acid)
Apple (takes on an odd texture)
Blackberries and Blueberries (may discolor other fruit)
Rhubarb (too sour)
1 pound fresh fruit
1/2 pound sugar
good quality rum, unflavored, enough to cover fruit
Add fruit to jar. If fruit is large, cut into bite-size pieces. If fruit has pits they may either be left in place for added flavor or removed if you desire. If you choose to leave the pits in place don’t forget to tell your guests that pits are present, to avoid accidents.
Pour sugar over fruit and add rum to cover fruit by 1 inch. Give a quick stir and seal with a tight-fitting lid. Store in a cool dry location away from direct sunlight. Allow fruit to sit for at least 4 to 6 weeks, tasting periodically. Serve Rumtopf fruit and liquid over Ice Cream, cakes, cheese cakes and waffles or inside rolled-up crepes. Serve strained Rumtopf liquid as an after dinner cordial or mix with other drinks of your choice. Enjoy!
Source: My Danish Kitchen