Blackcurrant Vodka

7 Aug

There is a winter treat in the UK, a sort of home-made liqueur called sloe gin. This is made by putting picked sloes, pricked with a fork, (the fruit of the blackthorn) in a large jar with sugar and covering the lot with gin before sealing the jar. This is left in the dark for a few months, then the liquid is drained off and the fruit discarded. It is pretty good, but I have a few variations. Firstly, any clear alcoholic stuff can be used. For example, I like rhubarb rum, made with small bits of rhubarb, white rum and sugar. Raspberry vodka is made in much the same way. With most fruit vodka is preferable to gin as the flavours (botanicals) in gin tend to muddy the flavour. The good news is that you don’t need the best booze, almost any will do as the fruit and sugar smooth out the harshness of the original. I picked almost the last of the blackcurrants and just put them in a clean pickle jar with vodka and sugar. By December it will be a taste of summer in the short, dark winter days of our northern land.

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