Can fruit be preserved in alcohol without adding sugar?

I'm wanting to try preserving fruit in alcohol for the first time this summer. Is it really possible to do this by simply covering fruit (I'm thinking apricots) with alcohol (rum) and letting it sit for several months? Or, is additional sugar needed to keep it from going bad?

anne cooks


HalfPint July 23, 2012
The thing with alcohol is that it's really good for extracting flavor from fruit. Almost too good. This is good if you are trying to infuse the alcohol with the flavor of the fruit, but alcohol will not preserve the texture of the fruit. It will get mushy and infused liqueurs often discard the fruit solids once the infusion period is over. So if you are trying to preserve fruit, putting it in alcohol is not the way to go.
ChefJune July 23, 2012
I've had really good luck with cherries in brandy.
anne C. July 24, 2012
I was hoping for both--fruit liquers and alcohol-drenched fruit I could use for desserts. But it sounds like won't really work. thanks for helping me keep my expectations realistic.
BoulderGalinTokyo July 23, 2012
I've been making ume shu (plum liquor) and fruit vinegars for over 35 years. On the years when I was dieting and reducing the sugar, the final product was not as good (delicious). Agave also didn't seem to work as well There is a certain amount of sugar needed to extract the juices from the fruit. We always used rock sugar (but that may have been an advertising ploy). Apricots are a good choice.

I haven't used rum, but I have used brandy, but usually I've use potato shotchu Alcohol @35 proof.
anne C. July 24, 2012
I hadn't heard of potato shotchu but will try it, if I can find a bottle. Thank you!
Recommended by Food52