Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Homemade Wedding Favours

Sloe Gin: This is a perfect party favour for those who want to embrace the fruity side of Spring with a fun twist of gin. Although horrible to taste straight from the branch, these delightful little sloes make a deliciously sweet but rather strong alcoholic beverage- Quite perfect for sipping on a late Spring evening. Although you could potentially brew the sloes for as long as you like (if you're patient apparently the best time is 18 years!), the best time would be to pick them in winter (around October) in preparation for your Spring date.


500g Dried Sloes
250g Sugar
1 litre of Gin

Carefully prick the sloes with a fork, and put them in a very very large sealable jar. Pour over the sugar and gin, close the lid and shake (but not too vigorously), every day until the sugar has dissolved. Store in a dark cupboard until you're ready to strain out the sloes using a muslin cloth. From this point you are ready to pour your concoction into smaller jars for your guests. Create a sticker using you and your partner's initials adding bows, lace etc. for that extra special effect.

Limoncello: This Italian lemon- flavoured liqueur will truly set your wedding apart from the rest. It is often served as an aperitif and has a rather sharp bite to it although is definitely a guaranteed party starter.


1l Everclear
1l Vodka
20 Lemons
900g Caster Sugar

Pour the bottle of Everclear and the bottle of vodka into a very large glass jar. Zest all of the lemons (trying to avoid any of the pith) into the mixture. Stir Gently. Cover the large jar tightly and store in a cool, dark place, for between 7-35 days, stirring your mixture at least once a week. Gently stir the lemon peels, pick one out and check how flexible it is. If the peel breaks, move onto the next phase.

Mix the Sugar and tap water in a large saucepan and bring to the boil. Boil for 5 minutes. This will be your syrup. When cooled, add the syrup to the lemon mixture. The more syrup you add, the lower the overall alcohol content will be and you'll end up with a more syrup-like consistency to your final product. Stir everything together well, returning the mixture once again to a cool, dry place for up to 35 days, stirring the mixture once a week.

The mixture should appear bright yellow, in which case it is time to bottle these little bad boys up! The best jars I think are the flip-top 80ml clear glass bottles as they're the perfect size for wedding favours and they add that rustic effect although cork bottles are also great like the ones pictured below.

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