This recipe originates from the 'Drinking with Dickens' book, written by Cedric Dickens (great great grandson of Charles!, which includes all the recipes of drinks mentioned in all of Dickens books. My grandfather was Cedric Dickens drinking partner in WWII, and the book was passed down to me.
- 1 lb Damsons
- 1lb sugar
- 1 bottle of gin (750ml is you like it syrupy, 1 litre if you like less syrupy- both work ok).
- Prick damsons, put into a clean sterilised glass container that can be sealed. (Demi Johns are perfect)
- Add sugar and shake every day until the sugar is very pink.
- Add gin, shake and store in a dark place. Turn and swill fruit around once a day until sugar has dissolved then leave and shake occasionally.
- After 3 months, strain and bottle.
- Damsons usually ready in September which means gin is ready for bottling just before Christmas.
- Works well with Vodka or Bacardi also.
- Same recipe works well with sloeberries.
- Rather than pricking the damsons, freeze them and when you take them out of the freezer, they split naturally.
When fruit has been used, de-stone and dry on a low heat for a few hours in the oven. The fruit can be used for fruit cakes or christmas pudding (it really does make such a difference using the damsons!)