Tipples and beverages

Spiced cranberry and orange vodka

Is it too early to talk Christmas? Would you please indulge me for just a little while? Because today I bring you a fruity festive triple. Perfect as a present, hostess gift or even a wee treat to yourself. The beauty about Christmas is the you get to make all these amazing goodies in advance and then watch them blossom as the months go bye. Plum and orange (are you seeing the theme?) mince meat is next on my hit list so watch this space!

This is the type of present I love as you can make far in advance and leave it to only get better with time. It’s always good having something like this in you back pocket to whip out when friends are around. The spices infuse along side the orange zest and cloves, marrying with the tart cranberries. You end up with this magnificently sweet yet tangy vodka which you can enjoy neat on it’s own or top it off with a dash if soda/sparkling wine for a longer drink.

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Every time you open the fridge you’ll be greater with this little bottle of joy. And it only takes a handful of ingredients. We pile orange peel and cranberries, cloves and cinnamon sticks into our bottles. Top it all off with a dash of sugar and a mountain of vodka.

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This recipe really is that simple. Flavours go in bottle. Vodka goes on top. Totally amazing Christmas flavoured vodka comes out the other side. I have grand dreams of making a special Christmas cocktail when the vodka has had its time to infuse fully. I’m thinking frozen cranberries, a splash of this festive vodka, all topped off with bubbly champagne.

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Makes 1.5L of vodka
Ingredients
300g frozen cranberries
250g golden caster sugar
Long strips of peel from 3 oranges
8 cloves
1 big cinnamon stick
75-100cl of vodka (or as much as it takes to fill your bottles)

Steps
1. First of all sterilize your glass jars. You can either run them through a dishwasher to make them sparkly and fresh, or you can put them in a sink of almost boiling water and leave them for 10-20 mins then leave them to air dry.
2. Place all the ingredients in a large bottle or split them between a few like I did. Top off with vodka leaving a gap at the top to allow you to shake the bottle well.
3. Shake the bottles for 10 seconds everyday for a week to help dissolve and mix in the sugar. Store vodka in the fridge and enjoy after 6-8 weeks of infusing!

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