Haw Brandy

A designated driver would probably appreciate something made just for them

Haw Brandy

Postby maggs » Tue Apr 08, 2014 18:49

Back in November 2013 my Wife and I went foraging in the hedgerows in Shropshire. We managed to get some rose hips, haws and sloes.

Well, the sloes were a no brainer, they were going to be steeped in alcohol for some tasty goodness. She had already made some sloe gin the year before, so we decided to see what it would to to vodka.

The rose hips were earmarked for a rose hip jelly, using a recipe from an old book found in her mother's kitchen.

We didn't have a clue what we would do with the hawthorn berries though. So we did what anyone would do in the modern age, we googled it and found a recipe for haw brandy.

From memory (ever unreliable), it was approximately:

[*]One 70cl bottle of brandy (we bought the cheapest brandy we could find)
[*]One pound of hawthorn berries (gathered from the hedgerows)
[*]Half a pound of sugar (granulated sugar that we found in the cupboard)

The process was as simple as putting everything into a kilner jar and shaking. In fact, that's exactly what we did, after giving the berries a wash first (and apparently pricking them as well). We shook it every day for the first week to help dissolve the sugar. I also give the jar a quick shake whenever I pass it on my way to the cellar, I don't know if this helps, but it makes me feel like I'm doing something.

We left it for about four months before straining and bottling, but this may have been a mistake. The recipe said to strain and bottle after three months, and I think this would have made a huge difference, as somewhere around the three and a half month mark the kilner of liquer started to show signs of a powdery deposit that filtered through with the rest of the liquid. Next time we do this we'll try and strain it closer to the three month mark as the liquid was clear at that point.
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