I don’t drink soft drink and would be hard pressed to tell you the last time I had anything other than tonic or sparkling mineral water, but goodness I enjoy a good old-fashioned cordial, especially in the warmer months.
And by old-fashioned, I mean just that: Not for me the garish red food colouring and array of additives that go into a jar of lolly water. I want natural colouring, simple techniques, tried and tested recipes. If that means a bottle of home-made cordial lasts a month at best in the fridge rather than six months on a shelf, I don’t mind. At least I know exactly what’s gone into it. Even better, I can add it to a range of beverages for a decidedly grown up summer drink. Can’t do that with lolly water.
Now, this being a recipe basic, I’m sticking with the flavour I most enjoy – Lemon. There are endless variations of course, mainly relying on citrus fruit or fruits with a lot of natural pectin, such as berries. I plan to play with some more recipes as the summer progresses and other fruits come into season, but for now let’s stick with the basics – grab some lemons, buy a few limes if you are not lucky enough to have them growing in your garden and head to your supermarket to buy a couple of odd sounding products – tartaric acid and citric acid. Trust me they are there.