Yes, we have been favouring our own gin. Sarah had the idea afer getting some reduced fruit from her work (we aren’t at the stage of growing fruit at the allotment yet). Although close to the best before date on the packet the fruit still had life left in it and was perfect for our little project. Both of us appreciate a nice drop of gin now and then so this seemed ideal. Sarah researched a recipe and off we went.
We started off with preparing the three combinations of fruit you see above as though we were cooking with it. So for our strawberries we only needed to cut the tops off and cut into quarters, blackberries just needed a rinse. The apples needed peeling and coring, plums needed stoning and cutting into quarters. Once the fruit was prepared we weighed it before tipping it into a litre sized kilner bottle. Next we weighed out the same amount of granulated sugar as we had of each combination of fruit and added that to the fruit. Then the fun part: gin! For this we went to the supermarket and bought a couple of bottles of budget gin. Sarah then filled our kilner bottles up with it, almost to the top. The bottles were then closed and tipped to mix the concoction – hence going for the kilner bottles with their tight sealing lids.
The bottles were tipped and shaken weekly over the next three months, after which the sugar had dissolved and the once clear gin had taken on the colour of the fruit. The final stage is to strain the gin. After trying a few methods we found the best was to pour the bottles through a food strainer in to a bowl to remove the larger pieces of fruit. It was then poured again through a sock shaped piece of muzzilen usually used for straining jelly to remove smaller pieces of fruit. Now finished the gins were put into the 25cl bottles you can see in the picture, after a little quality control test of course! All along its important to keep everything labelled. In case you were wondering the lovely handwriting you can see above Sarah’s; if left to Tom you’d be none the wiser to what you were opening!
Hope this was useful people – happy gin flavouring.