My husband travels a lot with his job and from time to time as a family we’ve joined him on his travels but now our grown up boys have studies and work responsibilities that means their time is always taken up. I recently went full-time freelance so I now have the flexibility to join him on my own plus I can pick up the odd review job along the way.
I did just that a couple of weeks ago and joined him on a quick trip to the Lake District. I haven’t been since I was a child and have strong memories of feeling very Swallows & Amazons as we hired a boat and walked across the Lakeland paths. Coming back some years later I was in awe of the colourful yet ever-changing landscapes and deep inky blue lakes. I kept pointing and saying Look At That! I Could Cook Here and Let’s Swim for It – all on repeat.
We stopped off at a waterfall and walked around commenting on how our boys would love it. I missed them at that very moment to my very soul. Halfway around the walk I decided that we should pick some fir and put it in vodka and make a martini to remind us of our mini adventure. No one told me off for picking the fir but then there was no one around as it was just us two for miles.
Next time I go back to the Lake District I will bring our boys. I felt a pull, a longing and just not sure I can do this childless travelling lark even if they are proper adults now. Those reading this with young children will probably think I’m mad but I love them and more importantly I like them.
Here’s my recipe for Woodland Vodka and a cocktail for you to make thereafter.
- 75cl triple distilled vodka
- 4-5 sprigs Douglas Fir, leaves stripped and chopped
- Small handful rosehips, pricked over with a pin
- 15 corriander seeds, crushed
- 15 juniper berries, chopped
- Place all the prepared ingredients along with the vodka in a large sealable jar. Seal and keep in a dark cool place for about 3-4 days. Strain into a sterilised bottle. Allow to round off in the bottle for a couple of weeks but you can just enjoy this straightaway if you like.
- 60ml Woodland Fir Vodka
- 5-10ml Dry Vermouth
- Ice cubes
- Place all the ingredients in the bottom of a cocktail shaker, stir and strain into a chilled martini glass.