The Gooseberries and Eldeflowers were left a month to brew in Vodka, merely shaken on occasion, in a Demijohn… [Gooseberry and Elderflower Vodka Recipe]. A Sunday dawn, before the wasps did awake, commenced the bottling of the brew. Fragile Elderflowers willn’t withstand the length of time sat in alcohol as a Sloe, for example, might. [Sloe Gin Recipe]. Indeed, With Knife and Fork’s Blog advises that once strained the vodka should be drunk in a mere few months, to forestall the loss of the floral nuances.
To bottle (when lacking a funnel): Strain through muslin into large bowl – scoop from bowl into jug – pour from jug into clean bottles – seal, label, store.
Despite being slightly sweet for my palate (keener on the bitter, the sour, the salty), the sharp, indeed hearty Gooseberry flavour is heightened by the Floral notes of the Elderflower, near’ shimmering, near’ effervescent, what a delightful manner of breaking-the-fast (!). This is quite the most delicately perfumed of flavoured vodkas. (That said I long to attempt Sarah Pettegree’s Rose Vodka, another Sunday brewing escapade.)
…Pour on ice, drink neat, or with a splash of something fizzy, to fully enjoy the gustative combination.
And, now to the bowl full of Vodka-imbued Gooseberries – promise of a sparky Gooseberry Compote (simmer with a touch of sugar), a stunning Gooseberry-Vodka Jelly…. Or perhaps a little pot of Gooseberry-Vodka Jam… hmmm... a Gooseberry Fool me thinks
(The use of the remnants is inspired by Christophe of Macalla Farm, Clare Island, who makes Elderflower and Lemon Marmalade and Cordial with the strained remains of his Elderflower Champagne. I shall try persuade him to share his recipes.)