Irish cream isn't always considered the most sophisticated spirit, but there's no shame in the occasional after-dinner tipple of the sweet, creamy stuff, especially when you make it yourself. That's right—fresh Irish cream is easily within your reach and endlessly adaptable, too.
Angela Waterhouse, who grew up in Dublin and tends bar at Stone Park Cafe in Brooklyn, has made all kinds of Irish creams—omitting the coffee flavor and adding raspberry liqueur for Valentine's Day or swapping in limoncello for a Mother's Day cocktail. For St. Patrick's Day, she'll drop in a bit of mint and a touch more chocolate to keep things festive.
"I tend to use Tullamore Dew whiskey, which has a lovely softness to it," she says. And though homemade Irish creams make lovely gifts, "cut back on the condensed milk if you're using it right away," Waterhouse advises, which, frankly, you will be after tasting it.
Homemade Irish Cream
Recipe adapted from Angela Waterhouse, Stone Park Cafe, Brooklyn, NY
Yield: 1 quart
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: N/A
Total Time: 5 minutes
1½ cups Irish whiskey (such as Jameson)
One 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
2 tablespoons chocolate syrup
2 teaspoons instant coffee
1½ cups heavy cream
1. In a blender, combine the whiskey, sweetened condensed milk, chocolate syrup and instant coffee, and blend on high speed until combined.
2. Place the whiskey mixture in a bowl and stir in the cream until smooth. Store the Irish cream in the refrigerator, covered, for up to 2 weeks. Serve chilled over ice.