Newfoundland Blueberry Rum Slush. Just in time for the festive season, this make-ahead cocktail is made with wild Newfoundland blueberries and no artificial colours or flavours.
With the festive season just around the corner I decided to share with you this make-ahead frozen cocktail. It’s perfect for pre-dinner drinks or even as the house specialty at your annual Christmas party.
Last year, our Newfoundland Christmas Slush was such a hit that I knew I had to follow it up with something special this year. The Blueberry Rum Slush was the answer.
This type of Christmas alcoholic slush has been made for decades here in Newfoundland. It is often found in freezers around the province in small recycled salt beef buckets as the storage vessel of choice.
I considered several Newfoundland flavour inspirations for this new slush version but settled on wild blueberry. I wondered, with so may recipes for slush going around, why I had never seen one featuring our best known native berry.
Perhaps this is not an original idea but I’ve yet to encounter a similar version. It really does seem like a natural choice for the Holidays in this part of the world.
I’ve often said that I’ve tasted blueberries in other regions in North America but they are not the same as Newfoundland berries, which tend to be smaller and sweeter. The intense blueberry flavour lends itself well to this cocktail.
I wanted to keep this recipe simple so I added very few other ingredients. Lemon is the only other main flavour really, which is adds a naturally complimentary note to blueberries while bringing some bright acidity to the tastebuds.
If you don’t prefer rum, you can easily substitute vodka or gin. I plan to try gin next time because I think it’s juniper berry flavouring would be a naturally earthy compliment to the sweet blueberry flavour. You’ll often see low growing juniper bushes right beside blueberries anyway, so they are probably flavour matched by nature.
A splash of club soda is all that’s needed to serve up this refreshing cocktail. The amount of the slushy ice base is easily adjusted to taste and alcoholic preference too.
Give it a try, it may just be the hit of your Holiday season!
Like this Newfoundland Blueberry Rum Slush recipe?
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If you liked this recipe, you may also want to try our Orange Pineapple flavoured Christmas Slush.
- 8 cups fresh or frozen blueberries 4 pints
- 2 cups water 480 ml
- 2 cups sugar 450 grams
- 1/2 cup lemon juice 120 ml
- 3 cups white grape juice or apple juice (720 ml)
- 26 ounce bottle of amber rum 750 ml 40% alcohol
You will need an airtight covered plastic container to make the slush in, and to store it in the freezer. Airtight is important because this slush can stay in the freezer for quite a long time if need be, and you don't want it absorbing freezer odours. Large tupperware bowls with snap on lids work well. Here in Newfoundland, if we are making large batches, we use food grade plastic buckets that salt beef is sold in. Don't assume a salt beef bucket in a Newfoundland freezer has salt beef!
In any case, this recipe makes about 4 litres/quarts of slush so a 4.5 or 5 litre/quart container will be required.
Add the blueberries to a saucepan and bring to a slow simmer for only about 5 minutes to get the berries to release their juice. You can add 1/4 cup of water to the berries if you like, in order to hasten the boiling process.
At the same time, in a separate pot, add the 2 cups of sugar to the 2 cups of water and simmer for 4-5 minutes to make a simple syrup.
Strain the juice off the berries and add it to a 4 quart (litre) covered plastic container (or larger).
Puree the strained berries very well in a blender or food processor.
Add the blueberry puree to the plastic container, along with the simple syrup and all of the remaining ingredients.
Give it a good stir to combine, put the lid on and put the container in the freezer for about 6 hours.
After six hours, ice sheets should be beginning to form in the slush. You want to break these down into smaller crystals. An immersion blender is idea for this, but if you don't have one, a few minutes of vigorous stirring with a whisk should do the trick.
Return to the freezer and after a few more hours, give it another stir. The slush then stays covered in the freezer until ready to serve.
When serving, stir the slush well every time and spoon 4 ounces of the icy mixture into an 8 ounce glass. Add 2 or more ounces of club soda. Stir and serve
Another suggestion is to serve the slush in martini glasses mixed with a splash of Prosecco and a garnish of a lemon slice and frozen berries on top.
A 4 ounce serving of this slush with a 2 ounce splash of soda water per serving works out to a cocktail that is about 5% alcohol/volume.
This recipe is also easily halved for a smaller batch of 2 litres, using a 375 ml flask of rum.
The nutritional information provided is automatically calculated by third party software and is meant as a guideline only. Exact accuracy is not guaranteed. For recipes where all ingredients may not be used entirely, such as those with coatings on meats, or with sauces or dressings for example, calorie & nutritional values per serving will likely be somewhat lower than indicated.
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