Firstly you need to start collecting your sloes. Always wait until the first frost as it gives the sloes a glaucous bloom rich in flavour.
I use a plant pot in a plastic bag to collect the sloes. This gives me two free hands to battle the wicked blackthorn thorns!
Once you have sufficient, wash them thoroughly. Please note, the bloom won't come off - and should not.
Then place them into a clean plastic bag or container.
Place in a freezer overnight. This will help burst the skins releasing the flavour.
Take a clean bottle - any bottle will do - and fill to about half with sloes. This isn't an exact science so don't worry if there are too many or too few.
Then top with about an inch of sugar. I use preserving sugar but white granulated works just as well.
Top up with gin.
And now give it a good shake to mix up the sloes and sugar.
All the sugar will now have fallen to the bottom. Place the bottle in a dark cupboard and shake every other day until all the sugar dissolves.
Of course if you have any gin left over you can always add different fruit whilst still using the same process.
Here I'm using sloes and plums.
The sloe gin and sloe & plum gin will be ready just before Christmas . Strain the liquid but if you don't want it to turn cloudy, don't squeeze. Let it run freely. Then re-bottle and drink! Cheers
- 2.0c Sloes
- 500.0ml Gin
- 1/2c Sugar