White liquor (high-alcohol content flavorless liquor)
Use 2 tablespoons of white liquor for a 800 ml jar.
Sterlize the jars and lids in boiling water.
Invert the jars on a clean kitchen towel.
Wash the apricots. Cut them into half following the peach-like line that runs lengthwise on the fruit. Take out the pits.
Make the syrup. Bring the water to a boil, and dissolve the sugar.
Bring plenty of water to a boil in a pot, and put the apricots as well as the pits in. Boil the fruit on high heat for about a minute and a half.
Drain the apricots into a colander. Pack the apricots and pits into storage jars, leaving no gaps.
Put a little white liquor into the jar. Bring the sugar syrup back to a boil, and pour it into the jars up to the rims. Screw the lids on loosely.
Put the jars in a hot water bath with the lids still loosely screwed on, and boil the jars for 7 minutes to eliminate the air in them. Screw the lids on tightly and boil the jars for another 5 minutes.
The jars are really hot, so be careful as you take them out of the pot. Invert them and leave them to cool down overnight.
Story Behind this Recipe
I happened to find some fresh apricots at the supermarket one day and challenged myself to preserve them in syrup. It's been 4 years since my first attempt. The first year I just made a small amount, and perhaps because of that it was a big success. The next year I reduced the sugar, but that version wasn't sweet enough, so I took the syrup out of the jar and added more sugar. On the 3rd year I wasn't able to seal the top on properly, so I had to throw away half of the 5 kilos I'd preserved.
Make sure to pack the jar tightly. If you put the apricots in neatly, there will be no gaps after adding the syrup. 200 g of sugar and 200 ml of water is not enough sometimes, so I've listed a generous amount of syrup ingredients. The white liquor is used as insurance against spoilage if you aren't able to achieve a proper vacuum seal.