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As we move into harvest season, the biggest excitement on country walks is monitoring the progress of the hedgerows as the red dots mature into plump and juicy blackberries. This is the one time of the year where the overstock of Tupperware of all shapes and sizes (leading to the near-impossible task of storing them safely and not spilling out on the floor every time that cupboard is opened) is well and truly justified. Armoured with said containers, it’s off to the hedgerows we go. Blackberry and apple crumble is the classic creation after a day’s haul. With the overstock, however, consider squirrelling away a few surplus berries for a grown-up treat.

Ingredients

  • 250g ripe blackberries.
  • 70cl bottle of gin. You don’t need to go too expensive but likewise, not too cheap and cheerful but a nice balanced gin.
  • 110g white sugar.

Method

  • Sterilise a large jar and place the blackberries, gin and sugar into it.
  • Give the jar a good gentle shake for a few moments every day until all the sugar has dissolved.
  • Store away in a cool dark place for 3-4 weeks until it is drinkable (you can leave for up to 3 months if you wish)
  • Gently strain the liquid through a muslin cloth being careful not to crush the berries.
  • The discarded berries can be used as a boozy compote or even a lovely addition to a cold glass of prosecco.
  • Then simply add 50ml of your blackberry gin to 30ml sugar syrup, juice of half a lime, a load of ice, tonic, mint & more blackberries to garnish and sit out in the wonderful glow of the Indian summer to enjoy.