‘Here we go making mulberry gin….’

My morning sortie to gather a bowlful of mulberries for breakfast (actually, forget the bowl.  Mulberries go directly to mouth) has suddenly got much harder.  Autumn’s in the air as I traipse across the dewy grass.  The mulberries are fewer.

The mulberry tree still bears fruit.

This isn’t just the fault of the weather.  We have some new residents in the garden.  A family of moorhens: mum, dad, and five chicks.  They like mulberries too.  The windfalls that used to be mine, all mine, are now theirs, all theirs.  But who could begrudge such charming tenants?

 

Anyway, I suddenly realised that if we were going to have our much talked-of mulberry gin in time for Christmas, we needed to act.  We had a houseful of helpers.  Not just Malcolm, but Emily and her boyfriend Miquel, over from Barcelona.

Out came the bowls.  Out came the small steps.  Out came the team.  We stripped the tree of any berries that were ripe enough to fall into our hands, as the moorhen chicks cheeped and protested from their lair in the flowerbed.

Emily concentrates on the task in hand.

The rest was easy.  Wash the berries.  Half fill an empty bottle with gin.  Poke berries into bottle.  Add sugar.  Argue about whether to follow the recipe that suggests adding a handful of roasted almonds or not.  Decide to leave almonds out today, but add them to the next batch.  Screw cap on bottle.  Shake.  Place in cupboard with note to self to shake bottle daily for a couple of weeks, then wait for months.  That’s it.  Tidy up.  Before Christmas we’ll strain off the gin, re-bottle it … and look forward to sampling it on Christmas Day.

How many people does it take to fill a mulberry gin bottle?

Or … if you’re on our Christmas present list, you might get a bottle too.

Mulberry gin in the making.

31 thoughts on “‘Here we go making mulberry gin….’”

  1. The moorhens are charming – not so sure about the mulberry gin, but it sure sounds festive 🙂 Here, on our usually very hot and steamy summer Christmas Days we’ll probably stick with tonic and a slice of lemon in our gin. Cheers in advance anyways.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I feel a bit sorry for the moorhens…. 😉
    I’m not a gin drinker but when I discovered sloe-gin I insisted to myself that I MUST try and admire the inventions of my fellow friends. Since then I discovered also ginger root beer and many other local specialties. Lovely photos and beautifully told. Many thanks Margaret. We are now in Devon and enjoyed already plenty of fab fish&chips and more…. AND we are back with laid-back and very kind friends, what could be better.

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    1. Please don’t be sorry for the moorhens. Lots of food and water, reasonably safe from predators, doting humans nearby. Enjoy Devon and the summer. No summer here 😦

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  3. What a wonderful thing to do together indeed and the moorhens are so cute and curious. I’ve never heard of or tasted Mulberry gin, but I love the ritual, I have a friend who travels up to the Ardeche often to visit her grandmother and I’ll never forget her talking me through (in her best English – it an English conversation lesson) the process of collecting the chestnuts to make ‘créme de marron’ and then she presented me a little cup with a teaspoon in it, and it was divine! Keep up the culinary, fruit picking, family rituals! Food and drink for the soul.

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    1. Thank you. We will. I have so many happy foraging memories of France. Gathering kilos of walnuts, and once making vin de noix – we still have a small bottle left. Mushrooms, of course. Cherries. So many things. We learnt always to carry a ‘au cas ou’ bag … just in case. It’s sad it’s so much less of a thing here, but I do my best to wave the flag for foraging.

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  4. The sun came out this afternoon after weeks of gloom, wet and cold. We went for a walk and discussed sloe gin and found lots of fruit – not quite ready to pick. Your mulberry gin sounds gorgeous and I like your photos very much!

    Liked by 1 person

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