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Russian Liqueur / Cordial with Dried Fruits and Nuts Recipe - Nalivka


Russian Nalivak

Russian Liqueur or Nalivka

© Reisons on Flickr.
This Russian liqueur is known as a nalivka and can be made at home with cognac, dried fruits and nuts. When a liqueur is aged, it is known as a cordial, so that's where this alcoholic beverage would fall.

If you're giving this cordial as a gift, start three weeks before gifting for it to be at its best. Once the liqueur has aged, it can be transferred to a pretty glass decanter. If you choose, you can strain out the dried fruits and nuts for a more refined look.

In Poland, these types of liqueurs / cordials are known as nalewki (nalewka is singular). As you can see, the Polish and Russian names are identical. Read more about Polish Nalewka here.

Yield: .75 liter/3 cups Russian Nalivka


  • 250g / 8 ounces dried figs
  • 125g / 4 ounces dried pitted dates
  • 125g / 4 ounces walnuts
  • Pinch cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 4 cracked cardamom pods
  • Zest of 1/2 lemon
  • 50g /1.75 ounces sugar
  • .75 liter / 3 cups good-quality cognac


  1. Place the figs, dates, walnuts, cinnamon, vanilla, cardamom, lemon zest and sugar in a glass bottle. Pour the cognac over. Seal tightly and leave in a dark place for three weeks.
  2. To give as a gift, strain and transfer to a pretty glass bottle. Otherwise, your Russian cordial is ready to drink. You can strain it or not, as see you fit and your tastes prefer. If this will be stored for a long period, strain the fruits and nuts.
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