I grow herbs, you know, about like I grow tomatoes that I showed you yesterday. One thing I’ve grown for some time is summerwood. It’s related to wormwood. Wormwood is what they make to make absinthe. When I was young absinthe made people go nuts and die early and give them short legs (e.g. Toulouse Lautrec). I use it to make aquavit. That’s Scandinavian for “water of life”. You dry the stuff and then you put it into a bottle of cheap vodka, and voila, in a week or so you have a bottle of “water of life” that you would probably have to pay ten or twelve bucks for at the ABC.
Did I ever tell you about the time when I was in college, and I and my two buddies, Freddy and Jerome, pooled our meager resources and bought a bottle of vodka and a watermelon. It was a lot of money. I lived on ten bucks a week. We heard from the local rednecks that vodka watermelon made a terrific summer cool down. This was in Tallahassee, Florida, and it gets mighty hot there. We plugged the watermelon, and I was surprised how easy it was to pour in the entire bottle. We let it sit for a day or two to let the ingredients integrate and mellow out. It was the worst crap I ever tried to eat in my life outside of that smalahove I had years ago in Trondheim, Norway.
Since we had no money and we couldn’t eat the watermelon, we decided that we should at least retrieve the vodka. We squeezed the melon through one of Freddy’s socks. Well, that didn’t taste too good either. We had to throw it away and go without food for a day or two.
What I did when I made that last batch of aquavit, was I got my dried tarragon mixed up with my dried summerwood. Tarragon aquavit is pretty putrid. But poulet a l’estragon (chicken tarragon) is pretty tasty. I made Frau Grace a chicken and tarragon aquavit cocktail. She didn’t like it. (That’ a chicken leg bone in the drink. Frau Grace didn’t think it was funny.)