We are at the start of a rare and blissful empty weekend. The sun is shining on a chilly Autumn morning here in Somerset and all the leaves are turning red and gold. This afternoon promises us a great game of rugby with Son #2 and his wonderful friends before we head home for Strictly and an Indian.
Thoughts are heading to the end of the year and now is the perfect time to start preparing some treats for the festive season. This annual ritual serves as a base flavouring for fizz on Christmas afternoon before we enjoy lunch. Or, can be enjoyed over a tumbler of ice in front of the fire as you write the Xmas cards. But be warned, it’s potent so serve it with a strong wrist.
When you get to the point of draining and bottling this vodka a few weeks away from now, save the fruit for drizzling over some good quality vanilla ice cream after a Sunday lunch.
Christmas Vodka – makes 1 large bottle
100g dried cranberries
6 dried apricots
4 dried figs
2 cinnamon sticks
4 tbsp soft brown sugar
1/2 nutmeg, freshly finely grated
twisted zest of half an orange and half a lemon
1 x 750ml bottle supermarket vodka
Get all the dry ingredients into a large storage or Kilner jar and top up with the vodka.
Shake to dissolve some of the sugar and store in a cool dark place. Mine lives under the stairs. Every few days agitate it to dissolve a bit more of the sugar. Around mid-November, strain the now bronze liquid through a fine muslin cloth into a sterilised bottle and store for the sparkly season.
In the meantime, enjoy crunching through the leaves and the warm Autumn light.
Have a great one!