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Sloe Gin

Story location: Home / Blog / food_and_drink /

I made sloe gin again last year, starting with a similar recipe to the one I used earlier. I froze the sloes first which helps to split the skins and softens the fruit, which helps extract the flavour. After a few weeks in the freezer I put the sloes and sugar in a pan and warmed them through before putting everything in a jug.

When it came to straining the sloes, there was a lot more sediment than normal. I ended up with one bottle of clear sloe gin and one bottle of alcoholic sloe smoothie, which will probably work well with a mixer or fruit juice. The sloe gin was quite sweet so I poured some more gin on the sloes, without any sugar, to extract a bit more flavour. I gave this a few weeks then strained it and blended it with the first bottle. The end result was quite good but was more work than the old method.

I won't bother warming the sloes again. It results in too much sediment and is more hard work in the end, I'll stick to just freezing then infusing in gin.

Sloe Sherry

Story location: Home / Blog / food_and_drink /

When I made the Sloe Gin, I left the gin for 3 months before filtering and bottling it. I then poured a bottle of sweet sherry onto the sloes to see how much extra flavour could be extracted from them. I didn't add any sugar, I hoped that the sweetness in the sherry was sufficient.

Today, I filtered and bottled the sherry. It doesn't have as much flavour as the gin but it's still acceptable. Next year, I think I will leave the gin for 2 months rather than 3, so there should still be some flavour left in the fruit for a 2nd 'extraction'.

I've been told that it's possible to make a rather nice 'sloe liqueur' chocolate by taking the used sloes, removing the stones and mixing the flesh with melted chocolate, then leaving to set. I was going to do that today but removing the stones was very fiddly. I tried one of the sloes and found that it was fairly dry and tasteless. Having used them to make two drinks, I had probably removed too much of the juice and flavour.

Sloe Gin

Story location: Home / food_and_drink /

This is my first attempt at making Sloe Gin. The units are mixed metric/imperial because I didn't note the weight of the sloes in kg.

  • 2½ pounds Sloes (or sloe/wild plum mixture)
  • 300g white sugar
  • just over a litre of gin.

I made it in a 2½ litre jug which once contained cider. The sloes and sugar nearly filled the jug. I poured in as much gin as I could until it was nearly full.

I must remember to invert the jug a couple of times per day for the first few weeks, then every few days for the next couple of months. It should be ready to drink by Christmas.

Picking Sloes

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I thought I'd have a go at making Sloe Gin this year. I went for a walk in the countryside near Coventry, to a place where I suspected there might be sloes. The first trees I found were quite poor with only a few sloes on each, and they were difficult to reach. I walked further and found a few trees which were much better.

I sorted and washed the sloes when I got home. I managed to pick 2½ pounds of them, although some were larger and may actually be wild plums.