It may seem a little early to be talking about Christmas..but! If you want to have a homemade infused tipple at the most festive time of the year, you’ll need to start the process now.
Infusing gin has been a staple of my Christmases. We make some every year and I love it.
It’s great to enjoy yourself at home or to give as a sustainable gift to friends and family. Eveyone loves a gin!
I love this slow method of hand making gifts for Christmas. They’re not an afterthought, but a thought through, lovingly slow process that has taken months to make.
This year I’ve steered away from my usual sloe gin and opted to go for a hedgerow mixture!
What’s it made with?
This recipe uses a mixture of sloes, bullace (very similar to sloes, just without the thorns on the bush), blackberries and wild rose hips.
This combination will be beautifully rich and taste so much better than anything you could buy in the shops.
If you live in the UK you should be able to forage these delights in your local hedgerows and woodlands.
Keep your eyes peeled and always have a pair of snips and a in your pocket so you’re never caught short! No one wants old blackberries in their pockets.
When it comes to foraging there are 3 vital rules you should follow:
- Only pick a maximum of 1/3 of what you can see. Leave some for other foragers and the local wildlife too!
- Always forage away from roadsides and field edges. Roadsides are dangerous and cover the fruit with pollution. The farm fields could be using nasty insecticides and fertilisers which are harmful to ingest.
- Always, always be sure of what you’re picking. Here are examples of what I’ve foraged for this recipe.
When you’ve got your foraged fruits home, pop them straight in the freezer. This will help the skins to split meaning they are able to infuse with the gin much quicker.
How to make your infused gin
To make 500ml of infused gin you’ll need:
- Clean glass jar with a lid
- 250/300g of mixed hedgerow foraged berries & hips, frozen
- 500ml of gin- the cheaper the better as you’ll loose the delicate botanicals when infusing anyway!
- 150g of granulated sugar
How to make it:
1) The first thing you will need to do is pop all the of frozen berries and hips into your chosen jar.
2) Then top that up with your sugar
3) Slosh in around 500ml of your gin
4) Give it a good stir and pop the lid on
5) Make a little label so you know what that murky liquid is in the back of your cupboard a few months down the line!
6) You’ll want to pop your jar into a cupboard to keep the light out and give it a good stir every week or so. This keep the fruit moving around and helps it to infuse.
7) Keep it in there for 2-3 months before decanting into a nice bottle for the festive period! I like to save my old gin bottles and transfer the label so it looks fancy. You can of course, use any old clean glass bottle or jar you have in your stash.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this recipe! Let me know in the comments if you give this ago.
Thanks for reading.