The Cottage Smallholder

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Sloe Sherry recipe

a bottle of sloes beside a bottle of sherry

Sloes and sherry are a good combination

This sherry recipe works equally well for the sloes, bullaces and damsons that are left over from your sloe gin. Our old pal Gilbert always makes this on Boxing Day, having polished of a few bottles at their renowned Christmas Eve Drinks Party and toasted the Queen with sloe gin on Christmas day.

He claims that it is to salve the disappointment of his Christmas stocking. Everyone knows that anything as small as a stocking would never grace the foot of Gilbert and Marjorie’s bed.

Having finished the final batch of our 2005 sloe and damson gin I decided to make this wicked grog. Once upon a time I made sloe sherry every year and it’s lethal stuff. I used to use the cheapest sherry until Gilbert tipped that a reasonably priced medium sherry makes a much better tipple.

So when you finish your sloe or damson gin, don’t chuck out the fruit as there are several recipes for gin soaked sloes, damsons and bullaces. Damsons make a great alcoholic pudding, either baked in a suet pudding, in a sponge or in a pie. They also can be stoned and dipped into melted chocolate to make alcoholic sweets.

Sloes and bullaces are too bitter to be used in cooking but are ideal to have a second alcoholic outing as the base of sloe sherry. (Update:  this is a marvellous grog, we added it to our roast chicken recipe, instead of port, with a great success).

Recipe for Sloe or Bullace Sherry
Recipe Type: Liqueur
Author: Fiona Nevile
  • Gin/vodka soaked sloes or bullaces
  • Large (1.5 litre) Le Parfait jar
  • 1 litre bottle of medium sherry (not too cheap, try a supermarket own brand)
  • 1 tablespoon of white granulated sugar, after two weeks (optional)
  1. Half fill the sterilised jar with the sloes/bullaces from your sloe gin.
  2. Top up with sherry.
  3. Fit a new rubber ring and seal. Label the jar.
  4. Keep turning the jar each day for a week.
  5. Store the jar in a dark, dry area for 3-6 weeks.
  6. Sample the grog after two weeks, just to see how it’s progressing.
  7. A tablespoon of sugar can be added at this stage, according to taste.

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  1. Just made another sloe sherry my girlfriends never had it before I’ve told her it tastes the same as sloe gin she loved my sloe gin she helped me pick them she’d never seen them before 🙂

  2. Just found a demijohn of sloe gin 3 years old, in the garage. It’s perfect. Would the sloe berry’s be to far gone for a second hit at say, sloe sherry ?? They now have a semi sweet taste to them, with a sour after tang left in the mouth. Any suggestions ! MickB.

  3. Artie

    Great site. I have just finished my 2011 batch of Sloe Gin – it was the best ever. There is nothing better on a cold winter/spring night. I am worried about 2012’s sloes as there has been a late frost and that ruined the fruits a few years ago. Fingers crossed. I have just bought some sherry to try that with the leftover sloes – I hope it turns out to be good.

  4. Sarah Uglow

    I have just strained 2 of my bottles of sloe vodka and vanilla,but after trying it I found it quite sharp so half of it has gone back in with the sloes and a load more sugar and half of it has had sherry and a bit of sugar added, the remaining bottle will be kept as it is because my husband likes the sharp one, so out of 2 bottles we will now have 3 different varities. I will then use the left over sloes to make apple and sloe jelly(with a kick!) 🙂

    • Andrea McAdam

      I followed Sipsmith recipe and did not add sugar until ready to drink. You make a syrup with equal parts sugar and water( by weight) and add it to your taste. It’s so easy to get the right sweetness.

  5. Buckaoa

    Thank you for the Ecard, happy new year

  6. George Duncan

    just like to say thanks for all your great advice i just started my sloe gin experience made some at the end of september and tried some this weekend with some friends and we ended up polishing off two bottles so will be trying the used berrys with sherry but could i use gin again and just leave it a bit longer ? thanks again

  7. A couple of month’s ago I found the last remaining bottle of Sloe Gin that I made 16 years ago.It was absolutely gorgeous. It set me off to make some more, which I have just bottled,but unfortunately I’ll not be arond in 16 years to see how it turns out.However, I was pleased to see an extension of the use for the sloes. I only had Fino available but after a week I see that there is very little colour.Can I expect any? Should I add additional sugar because I used Fino?How long before I strain and Bottle?

  8. This years sloes are unbeleivable, I don’t know if I’ve done the right thing or not because I can’t find a recipe! I’m on a budget, so gin was a no go in my cupboard I had 3 bottles of bristol cream sherry so I’ve put 3lbs of sloes, 1lb of sugar and 3 bottles of sherry in a demijon, cling film on top,and now hope for the best…..if anybody can advise me please do!

    • Fiona Nevile

      Hi Luci

      The cling film isn’t great as a stopper. If you can’t find a cork of the right size tape a large 5cm wad of cotton wool over the cling film (this can breathe like a cork) or basic loo paper (similar properties but don’t use the deluxe versions with added aloe vera ect) – a great big wad of at least 10 sheets doubled over. Secure with string. And make sure that whatever you use covers the opening and reaches below the top lip by at least 2 centimeters. Then you’ll be fine!

  9. Linda Pierson

    Put the sloes in the freezer then you dont have to prick them

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