Saturday, 26 July 2014

Friday nights and plum vodka cocktails

Friday nights have always been my favourite part of the weekend. When we were young we would stock up on 7up, chocolate and Ripples crisps (they were very fancy at the time) and snuggle in with my parents to watch a film. As I got older and went out and about with my friends I used to love coming home to find my parents listening to music, drinking wine and talking through their week. I'd often join them for a glass and the lowdown on the week. It's a tradition I like to continue. If you pass by our house on a Friday evening you are likely to hear my cries of "make it cosy in here" and "put some music I'll like on". Really, The Husband has a lot to put up with. To make up for my demands I do normally make him a decent cocktail to kickstart the evening.

Last night, we had some simple plum vodka and cava concoctions. I started the plum vodka infusing just a couple of weeks ago but I wasn't able to wait any longer before trying it out. I have three different infusions on the go. Two different varieties of plum and one infusing with the stones as well. The plum vodka stockpile came about after I bagged a bargain on early plums at the Cambridge Sunday market. I was greedy and ended up with more than we could eat. It had to be vodka. Well, it could have been gin but we had drunk all of that so it had to be vodka.

I simply cut up the plums into quarters and added them to a clean kilner jar along with the stones if I was using them and a couple of tablespoons of sugar. I topped up the whole lot with vodka and let it sit for a couple of weeks. When I couldn't wait any longer I strained it through a muslin lined sieve and bottled in a sterilised bottle. I am amazed by the colour; a deep, ruby red. The batch with the stones has a subtle almond flavour which I think gives it a lovely complexity. I actually added a couple of extra tablespoons of sugar and stirred to dissolve at this stage. The additional sugar brought out the plum flavour nicely. 

It had been a long week so no fancy cocktails were on the menu. About twenty minutes before The Husband got home I stuck my last bottle of bin-end cava from The Wine Society in the freezer. Plum vodka, cava and some white currants rescued from the back of the fridge. Cocktail sorted and Friday evening well and truly begun.

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