Sloe Gin Recipe:
- 1lb/454gm of washed sloes
- 4 ozs/112gm of white granulated sugar
- 75cl bottle of medium quality gin
- Sterilised 1 litre (at least) Le Parfait jar or wide necked bottle
- 2-3 drops of almond essence
- Wash sloes well and discard any bruised or rotten fruit. Prick fruit several times with a fork and place sloes in either a large Kilner/Le Parfait jar or a wide necked 1 litre bottle. Put several sloes in my palm to prick them rather than picking them up one by one. (I freeze them as we don't get frosts early enough, and this usually splits them too so avoids the time spent pricking them).
- Using a funnel, add the sugar and top up with gin to the rim.
- Add the almond essence.
- Shake every day until the sugar is dissolved and then store in a cool, dark place until you can resist it no longer (leave for at least three months, can be left for up to a year).
- Some people strain the grog (through muslin/jelly bag) after 3 months and bottle it, leaving it mature for six months. We strain and bottle after a year. Don’t leave the straining process any longer than a year; leaving the fruit in too long can spoil the liqueur.
Sloe Gin truffles recipe from here.
This recipe makes around 40 truffles
25g/1oz unsalted butter
75ml/3fl oz/5tbsp double cream
225g/8oz good quality Belgian chocolate
75g stoned sloes, broken up and softened with a pestle and mortar (already quite broken up from being in the sloe gin)
2 tbsp sloe gin
100g Very good quality chocolate (I use Green & Blacks 72% cocoa cooks chocolate, this really does make a superior truffle. Its high cocoa content gives you the 'hit' of chocolate without the sharpness of a plain chocolate)
Chopped roasted hazelnuts (optional)
- Line a Swiss roll tin with baking parchment
- Place butter and cream in a small saucepan and bring slowly to the boil, stirring constantly. Boil for one minute then remove from the heat.
- Break the Belgian chocolate into pieces and add to the cream. Stir until melted, then mix in the sloes and sloe gin.
- Pour the mixture into the prepared swiss roll tin and chill in the fridge for about 2 hours until firm.
- Break off pieces of the mixture and roll into balls. Chill for a further 30 minutes before finishing the truffles.
- To finish melt the Green and Blacks chocolate. Dip the balls into the chocolate on a fork allowing the excess to drip back into the bowl. Carefully cover the truffle with the hazelnuts by putting it into a small dish or saucer of the nuts and covering it with the hazelnuts by hand.
- Place the truffles in paper cases (if using) and refrigerate to set.
- If it's for a gift, find a nice box or something creative to store them in and decorate lovingly! Oh, and make more for yourself too!
Sloe Gin Chocolates
Couldn't be simpler - just put the stoned berries in ice cube trays or on a shallow-sided tray, pour over melted chocolate of your choice and leave to cool and harden. If using the tray you then cut them into the size you want - this is easier to do when the chocolate hasn't quite set - score the shapes with a knife.
You could also add some chopped nuts or other fruits for variety.
Last year I also used some sloes in a cordial here. This can be varied with whatever fruits you have or can forage from the hedgerows.
Enjoy, if you have a go at making any of these, or if you are already a maker of such lovely gifts.