Sugar Beet Liquor

The Open Bar

In Possum LivingDolly Freed writes beautifully about a childhood spent living frugally with her father on a half-acre lot just outside of Philadelphia. During this time, she mastered the complicated task of distillation, providing her readers with a recipe for basic moonshine must, as well as variations like dandelion wine and sugar beet liquor.

Our staff has recently been going through something of a beet awakening, and the fact that we can get tipsy off them just solidifies the fact that everyone we know should expect to find some root vegetables in their stockings this holiday season.

Sugar Beet Liquor


Slice thin of mince into a kettle 10 pounds of sugar beets.

Add just enough water to cover and bring to a boil.

Simmer 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Strain off this liquid and retain. Retain the pulp.

Repeat the previous three steps to the pulp.

Discard the pulp. (Give it to the bunnies.)

Combine the liquids and simmer until the steam no longer has a rank odor.

If the liquid is less than a gallon, add water to make it so. If it’s more than a gallon, boil it off till it is.

Cool to below 110°F, and add one package Fleischmann’s yeast.