Parts of our garden have turned into a No Man's Land as I've lost the battle against the weeds. But interestingly, our fruit bushes seem to love being treated mean and always come up with a good crop, no matter what life throws at them. My redcurrant bush has lots of fruit on it, but the birds have noticed this too, and they've been tucking in. Time to rescue a few berries for ourselves. I saved a recipe for Raspberry and Redcurrant cordial from last month's Country Living, and thought it sounded amazing, so I thought I'd have a go. First, the harvest.
No, that isn't Photoshop, it really is a scrap of blue sky that you can see between the branches.
They are like little red jewels. Each stalk has been nibbled, so I was just in time to pick them.
In the pan with 450g of raspberries. Heat and break up the fruit slightly, then strain through a muslin lined sieve.
I did this for about half an hour or so over a bowl. You need to push the fruit quite a bit to get all the juice out. It's precious - the recipe is quite fiddly and doesn't make a lot.
Then add 300g sugar per 500ml of juice, and a teaspoon of citric acid. You can buy it from Boots, but you may have to convince the pharmacist that you're not a drug dealer (even if you are a middle aged lady in a very unthreatening pink smock and Birkenstocks!). Heat the liquid until the sugar is dissolved and then bottle.
Isn't the colour intense....ruby red.
The taste is absolutely incredible. I can imagine this in a cocktail, too.