NZ Gardener - - Edibles -

Some peo­ple say there are only three in­gre­di­ents in sloe gin: sloes, sugar and gin. But ac­tu­ally there is a fourth in­gre­di­ent – pa­tience! Leave the fruit to flavour the gin for a few months – some for­agers even sug­gest years (al­though British food writer Nigel Slater says just wait “un­til the colour re­sem­bles a de­cent Beau­jo­lais”). The ra­tio of sugar to sloes is up to you – keep try­ing un­til you make one to your taste.

In­gre­di­ents • 500g sloes 250g to 350g sugar • 1 litre of any gin (you can make this with vodka too)

Prick the sloes with a fork or a nee­dle (or freeze then de­frost them, then bash them with a rolling pin) then add them to a large ster­ilised lid­ded jar. Add the sugar and gin, put the lid on and shake then store in a cool dark place, shak­ing ev­ery day un­til the sugar has dis­solved. Wait at least three months then strain the sloes out and bot­tle.


In­gre­di­ents • 1 cup sloes • 1 litre of Anise brandy (or any white brandy) a few cof­fee beans a spoon­ful of sugar a vanilla bean (op­tional).

Wash the sloe berries and add them to a ster­ilised jar or wide mouthed bot­tle. Add the brandy and sugar, then drop in the cof­fee beans, and vanilla bean (if us­ing), cover and leave in a dark, cool place for at least three months. You can also try adding chamomile flow­ers, or­ange peel or a cin­na­mon stick.

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