Kitchen 8: Maid’s Summer Booze!

I bet that got your attention!

I love summer soft fruits, strawberries, raspberries, loganberries, all the currants, they are all delicious.

So why not preserve them for winter.

We do I hear you cry, we can and bottle and jam and jelly. Well so do I when I can raise the strength, but one of my favourites is to make fruit liqueurs.

It is so easy.

Take a big preserving jar or bottle, the sort you can seal the lid down. Fill it two thirds full with your favourite soft fruit. Don’t pack it down, just tumble into the jar.

Now pour in enough sugar to come half way up the jar and then cover right to the top with the booze of your choice. 

I think vodka or brandy is best, but raspberries seem to respond very well too gin.

Seal, give a shake and leave for a few months.

Everytime you come across the jar give it an mild shake. The contents of the jar will look revolting, but have courage all will be well.

Afrer at least three months strain the whole lot through double muslin ( don’t squeeze, just allow to drip) and you will have the most beautifully coloured and flavoured sweet liquid with a kick like a mule! Bottle that and discard the stuff left in the cloth.

Done this way one bottle of booze can be turned into two bottles of liqueuer.

Now comes the best bit.

You can of course just drink them and very nice they are too, but you can do lovely things with them as well.

I soak cubes of sponge cake in strawberry vodka and then smoother them with whipped cream and toasted almonds for a grown up dessert.

This stuff isn’t for the children, strictly a grown up treat!

Add them to a fruit jelly (jello) to lift it skywards.

In hot milk for a night cap.

The possiblities are endless and these things keep well.

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