I seem to be on a quest for the perfect cordial. I quite like my water to taste of something occasionally, but I really don't like the super-charged stuff you get in supermarkets. It's far too sweet and I'm not a great fan of cordialised orange/lime/blackcurrant flavours.
I bought some Rhubarb and Ginger cordial the other day which was...quite nice, but it lacked any kind of gingery kick. What's the point of ginger without the kick? I ask you.
I resolved to make some myself. You can tell I'm on holiday. Oh how I love being on holiday. A bit of googling later:
1 large lump of root ginger (about 120g, actually)
1 lemon (might use 2 next time)
10fl oz sugar
square of muslin (I've been known to use a clean dishcloth..)
- grate the ginger and put it in a largeish saucepan with the water
- add the zest of the lemon (I took it off with a potato peeler)
- squeeze the juice of the lemon into the pan
- bring it to the boil
- simmer for about 20 mins
- leave the mixture to cool and infuse. I left it overnight. It tasted considerably better in the morning than it did 2 hours after it was cooked.
- sterilise* your bottles (wash and dry in a low over for 10 mins)
- scald your muslin/bottletops/funnel (pour boiling water over them in a bowl)
- bring the ginger liquid back up to a simmer (I do this because otherwise it spits and boils when I pour it into the bottles which are still hot from the oven because I am too impatient to allow them to cool).
- pour through the muslin/funnel into the bottles. Seal.
*I'm not sure my bottles are the most sterile of sterile things, frankly. I'm keeping my open cordial in the fridge, and keeping a close eye on the one in the cupboard for signs of fermenting. Though would fermenting be a bad thing? Ginger beer...now there's a thought...