Autumn has arrived and with it this year is an abundant harvest of free hedgerow wild fruits growing up and down nearly every country road across Northern Ireland - it’s a perfect time to gather nature’s provision to make some traditional Sloe Gin.
Picking sloe, otherwise known as Blackthorn Berries, is a well kept countryside tradition with the berries often made into slow wine or gin, perfect for the encroaching colder winter evenings.
Randalstown based Wholesome NI have shared this fantastic little recipe with us for making your very own Sloe Berry Gin!
James McLornan (Wholesome NI) commented:
“With plenty of berries on the hedgerows, try making your own Sloe Gin. It’s hard to beat with a drop of white lemonade, sitting in front of the fire at Christmas time!”
James’ recipe and instructions:
• Sloes 500g
• Sugar 250g
• Gin 70cl
• Wash and prick the berries with a fork
• Add them to a bottle with the sugar
• Add the Gin (use cheap Gin) and shake it up
• Store in a dark cupboard
• Shake every day during the first week, then weekly
• Decant the Gin in time for Christmas!
Sloes are also used to make delicious jams and jellies, and are full of goodness and health benefits.
Fresh sloes (per 100g) contain about 10mg of Vitamin C, and 5mg of Vitamin E. They are also rich in other nutrients - 453mg of Potassium, 5mg of Calcium and 22mg or Magnesium per 100g.
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