General ramblings

Try Something New Tuesday

Waste Less, Live More week continues apace, with Try Something New Tuesday!



My Make Do and Mend Year definitely become more adventurous with the food I was cooking, and more open to trying new things.
I went to River Cottage for a Bread Making Day, and then made my own Sourdough Starter, and have been making bread with varying degrees of success ever since.
And recently, I made gnocchi (great one for using up leftover mashed potato) and also custard (ditto for using up egg yolks).
But today, in the manner of all things thrifty and Waste Not, Want Not, and thinking ahead for Christmas (arrrghhhhhh! Yes I really did just say the ‘C’ word), I am experimenting with….


I was aware of elderflowers, but am ashamed to admit that I only realised that there are also elderberries on the same tree a bit later in the year, a couple of months ago.
But now I am on a mission to track them all down and have spent several afternoons foraging happily with the Smalls for blackberries and elderberries. It is like a living, breathing Enid Blyton novel I tell you.



So now I have a stash of elderberries, and given that I am already pretty stocked up with jam, I thought I would try something new.

Elderberry Gin 🙂

Think sloe gin, but with elderberries.
I am reliably informed by Twitter (my source of all knowledge), that this is: a) a proper thing and not something I just made up; b) tasty; c) not poisonous.
So I am giving it a go.

After a quick spot of googling I came up with this recipe here from ShabbyChickMe, and duly trotted off to Lidl (other supermarkets are available) for a large bottle of cheap gin.

Elderberry Gin1


And 2 minutes of mixing later, I was done

Elderberry Gin2I am hoping this will be ready for Christmas.
And that it tastes nice.
And that my friends and family like elderberry gin.

I only had 400g elderberries, so I am on the look out for some more, otherwise everyone will be having a shot each…

So what are you going to try new today?!


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  • Reply Waste Less Live More Week | My Make Do and Mend Year September 18, 2014 at 3:50 pm

    […] and if you missed it, and have a burning desire to read them, you can see my posts here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and […]

  • Reply Make It Christmas! | My Make Do and Mend Year December 2, 2013 at 6:11 pm

    […] you want to do this, you need to do it ASAP! I have made elderberry gin, but there are lots of other recipes for any kind of flavoured vodka/gin-try this […]

  • Reply Fruitful Friday | My Make Do and Mend Year September 20, 2013 at 8:57 am

    […] (I blogged about free jam over on the Pinaddicts blog a week or so ago), elderberries (to make your Christmas gin), and of course apples. This year has apparently been a bumper crop, and we have had bags gifted to […]

  • Reply Gemma September 17, 2013 at 7:46 pm

    Well I have found an apple and pear tree so been just eating them but I do sloe gin every year. This year I am also going to try elderberry gin as you have inspired me 😀

    • Reply Jen September 18, 2013 at 11:15 am

      Yay! Let us know how it goes 🙂

  • Reply Eco Thrifty Living September 17, 2013 at 6:59 pm

    Elderberry gin sounds interesting! I think I have elderberries in my garden, but I’m too scared to use them as I’m not entirely sure that is exactly what they are…

    • Reply Gemma September 17, 2013 at 7:48 pm

      You usually you make elderberry wine which is delicious but wine is a lot more work than gin and more risky as you make your own alcohol which could be of any strength.

      • Reply Jen September 18, 2013 at 11:15 am

        I’m not sure I am ready for making my own wine yet-sound like hard work!!

  • Reply AffordableLiving September 17, 2013 at 4:20 pm

    Reblogged this on Affordable Living and commented:
    Fabulous idea, and could really add some diversity into ones life.

  • Reply KathrynH September 17, 2013 at 3:32 pm

    We made elderberry wine a few years ago (following a River Cottage recipe – he gets everywhere!). We also made some blackberry wine at the same time which was far sweeter.

    • Reply Jen September 17, 2013 at 3:40 pm

      Not sure I am brave enough to try wine making Kathryn..!! This seems a much lazier way to do it-we will find out at Christmas if it tastes any good!

  • Reply lindaswildlifegarden September 17, 2013 at 2:13 pm

    Lovely post I just been given some onions so I might have a go at pickling them for hubby for Christmas

    • Reply Jen September 17, 2013 at 3:39 pm

      Great idea, let us know how you get on!

  • Reply Antonia September 17, 2013 at 11:59 am

    Masses of elderberries around here if you want more…

    • Reply Jen September 17, 2013 at 3:40 pm

      Brillo-will try and pop over 🙂

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