Written by Phil Brown, Badger Bushcraft Blog Sunday, 25 September 2011 08:06
As our regular readers will know there has been a bit of a boozy theme running through the Badger Bushcraft Blog over the last weeks with recipes that use brandy and whisky, in the this Wild Food blog article we will look at the easiest of fruit flavoured spirit recipes that being blackberry vodka liqueur.
Picking blackberries brings back some treasured and evocative memories of my childhood spending hours trying to fill an old ice cream tub and exploring the fields and footpaths near my parent's home in Weald near Sevenoaks in Kent. Once the tub was full I would return home and my mother would make apple and blackberry pie that we would eat with double cream whilst sitting out in the garden.
Locally to based between Maidstone and Ashford the blackberries are both in season and also in vogue with most of the well known "berrying patches" stripped bare both by the village inhabitants and the foxes and wild birds. Finding a crop big enough to fill a modest Pyrex bowl was somewhat of a mission this weekend and our favourite spot was stripped all but for a few blackberries that were hard to reach.
Fortunately there are plenty of unripe fruits that will mature in the coming days with the predicted fine weather, let's hope the weather forecast for our area of Kent is correct! With this in mind gathering a few more as needed will be a simple task when out walking Inca in the early and somewhat misty mornings.
Blackberry vodka liqueur recipe is the quickest and simplest wild fruit spirits to make all you will need are:-
My recipe is exceptionally simple and based around a 70cl bottle of vodka. First off remove one third of the vodka and store for later use.
Now add to the bottle 100g of caster sugar, I have found that caster sugar dissolves far quicker than granulated sugar, but use what you have to hand.
Now fill the bottle with the washed and dried fresh hedgerow blackberries. As you can see from the picture I need a few handfuls more to fill the bottle. The beauty of using blackberries is that the majority will fit into the neck of a normal spirits bottle and need no other preparation other than washing and drying.
Once all the ingredients are in the bottle replace the cap tightly, give it a good shake and place it in the cool dark cupboard occasionally shaking to agitate the fruit and any sugar that has not dissolved. After several weeks give it a little taste and add more sugar to sweeten and add viscosity if required.
Once you are pleased with the flavour and sweetness of your blackberry vodka, I tend to leave mine for 10 or so weeks which ties in perfectly with the festive season, strain through muslin or jelly bag and decant the filtered brew back into a clean bottle. The remaining boozy berries make an excellent topping to vanilla ice cream.
Other fruit based spirit recipes are featured on our Badger Bushcraft Blog and can be found here:-