Author Topic: A Good Year For Sloes ?  (Read 672 times)

alan de enfield

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A Good Year For Sloes ?
« on: 08:40:09, 07/04/19 »

We have a lot of Blackthorn hedges around us and they are currently in 'full flower'
Its looking like it'll be another good year for the Sloes and the resulting Sloe-Gin.


This is one of the half-mile long hedges I was walking past yesterday.




richardh1905

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Re: A Good Year For Sloes ?
« Reply #1 on: 08:53:22, 07/04/19 »

Amazing, isn't it?


I recently drove up the A15 from Lincoln and was blown away by the display of Blackthorn blossom north of Caenby Corner; went on for miles.


None to speak of here in Orkney, though.

fernman

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Re: A Good Year For Sloes ?
« Reply #2 on: 09:02:19, 07/04/19 »
They look very good, Alan, what area was it? I saw plenty throughout my walk on the Bucks/Herts border yesterday but it was always sparse and patchy, nothing like that in your photo at all.

My wife once picked a lot and made sloe gin, I wasn't keen on it, to me it was just alcoholic plum juice.

The pic below was taken during a walk on 24 October last year:



richardh1905

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Re: A Good Year For Sloes ?
« Reply #3 on: 09:09:21, 07/04/19 »
Love Sloe Gin.

We rented a cabin just outside Dalbeattie in October a few years ago - Blackthorn bushes covered in Sloes 20 yards from the door. We didn't go back to Orkney empty handed!

And Dolwyddelan in Snowdonia, where we lived for 10 years, was a great place for them too.

alan de enfield

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Re: A Good Year For Sloes ?
« Reply #4 on: 10:00:28, 07/04/19 »
They look very good, Alan, what area was it?



Its all around Lincolnshire (well, the bit with hedges and not open rolling fens !!!)


My 'area' is around 10-15 miles South of Lincoln.
That particular hedge is about 500 yards from a memorial to the crews of a Lancaster & a Hurricane that collided 11th March 1945 during a night time 'close support' exercise and 'landed' in the adjacent field. All 8 were killed.


I walk past it probably a couple of times a week - it gives a nice 5.5 mile circuit to keep the legs mobile.

Jac

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Re: A Good Year For Sloes ?
« Reply #5 on: 10:12:50, 07/04/19 »

................................ to me it was just alcoholic plum juice.




surely that's the whole idea :D
So many paths, so little time

pleb

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Re: A Good Year For Sloes ?
« Reply #6 on: 10:51:54, 07/04/19 »
I saw plenty of blossom yesterday too, but its that time of year.

fernman

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Re: A Good Year For Sloes ?
« Reply #7 on: 10:55:50, 07/04/19 »
surely that's the whole idea :D

It's not a man's drink....

That particular hedge is about 500 yards from a memorial to the crews of a Lancaster & a Hurricane that collided 11th March 1945 during a night time 'close support' exercise and 'landed' in the adjacent field. All 8 were killed.

Now that's a coincidence. During a walk on 5 March I unexpectedly came across a memorial for a Halifax that crashed in 1944 in the middle of Cowleaze Wood on the Oxfordshire/Buckinghamshire border. There's an entry in Wikipedia if anyone's interested.

Bigfoot_Mike

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Re: A Good Year For Sloes ?
« Reply #8 on: 13:50:05, 07/04/19 »
Years ago we came back from the Isle of Wight with carrier bags full of sloes. This created several Demi johns full of sloe gin, which didnít taste like plum juice - it has a more bitter taste. Once the gin was poured off, sherry was added to create sloe sherry over a few months. Finally, the alcohol impregnated sloes were added to molten chocolate. There is so much flavour and colour packed into a sloe, that it is a shame not to extract as much as possible. Since we moved to Aberdeenshire I havenít seen many blackthorns.

Jac

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Re: A Good Year For Sloes ?
« Reply #9 on: 13:59:48, 07/04/19 »
It's not a man's drink....

Well, that's ok then; more for me/us O0 O0
So many paths, so little time

Rob Goes Walking

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Re: A Good Year For Sloes ?
« Reply #10 on: 16:03:21, 07/04/19 »
It's not a man's drink....
That wouldn't stop me. Societal expectations never kept me from doing what I like. Definitely wouldn't make me feel less of a man!

Innominate Man

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Re: A Good Year For Sloes ?
« Reply #11 on: 16:04:53, 07/04/19 »
I saw plenty of blossom yesterday too, but its that time of year.
Shortly and I haven't checked, it'll be Damson Day in the Lyth Valley (South Lakes). It's an annual 'Country Fair' type of event which has, amongst other activities, walks around the local fields to see the bushes in full bloom.
We haven't been for a few years it was always a good day out.
Only a hill but all of life to me, up there between the sunset and the sea. 
Geoffrey Winthrop Young

ninthace

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Re: A Good Year For Sloes ?
« Reply #12 on: 22:51:32, 07/04/19 »
I  have never made sloe gin.  I did a rumtopf once, which I believe is similar in principle, using black cherries which was very shuccesshful.  Do you have to [censored] the sloes or do they go straight in?
Edit

Just noticed the censorship. It is what you do to sausages before you cook them which is an inoffensive verb but apparently a rude noun.
« Last Edit: 23:17:03, 07/04/19 by ninthace »
Solvitur Ambulando

Bigfoot_Mike

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Re: A Good Year For Sloes ?
« Reply #13 on: 22:58:19, 07/04/19 »
Ideally, the sloes need their stones to be removed and it is then worth slashing the fruit to allow juices to flow out. Donít wear anything white when doing this, unless you want to permanently change its colour. Removing the stones makes it easier to eat the chocolates you make after the sloe gin and sloe sherry.

alan de enfield

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Re: A Good Year For Sloes ?
« Reply #14 on: 08:40:48, 08/04/19 »
I  have never made sloe gin.  I did a rumtopf once, which I believe is similar in principle, using black cherries which was very shuccesshful.  Do you have to [censored] the sloes or do they go straight in?
Edit

Just noticed the censorship. It is what you do to sausages before you cook them which is an inoffensive verb but apparently a rude noun.



Don't pick the Sloes until after a couple of hard frosts. They need to soften.
Alternatively freeze then thaw them.
Give them a [censored] to 'pop' the shin and allow the juice to seep out.

Add to Gin.


Edit : Looks like I used the same word (take a pin and push it thru the skin - pr1ck it)