Things are crazy here at the moment so posts might be short. Trying to finish this book, work on a load of other projects and proposals and keep on top of the vegetable growing, animals and help out on the campsite is making me frazzled. But even in the midst of this there is time for cordial making – this is not because I have the secret to producing more time, but because it is so easy and quick to make. It is also delicious to drink which makes things a bit better.
The recipe is a modified version of a cordial in Salt, Sugar, Smoke by Diana Henry – a book full of sparkling jewels.
Redcurrant Cordial: lots of red currants – I mean lots, water, sugar some lemons. Pick redcurrant – don’t bother to strig them, just give a quick wash. Pop in a saucepan and cover with water. Bring to the boil and simmer for a while – 30 minutes more or less. Last time I forgot and simmered it for 2 hours – luckily James turned it off before we went to bed. Strain the juice through a straining bag or tea-towel. For every 500ml of juice add 400g of sugar or thereabouts. Also add the juice of a lemon or two. You can add the zest to simmering redcurrants if you like, and I do.
Gently heat up the juice and sugar and lemon juice in a clean pan, once it is all dissolved pour into sterilised bottles of jars, seal and it should keep well for a couple of months. Once opened keep in the fridge.
This is lovely on ice with fizzy water, but when the day has been long and my head is fizzing with ideas I add in a dash of the redcurrant shrub I made last year with the cordial and fizzy water – I call it the double redcurrant dash. I didn’t like the shrub by itself as it has a strange grainy texture. I also don’t like it with fizzy wine, but made into a cocktail with the cordial and fizzy water it is delicious.
I don’t put blackcurrants in my cordial – you can, but I save them all for cassis – priorities people …..