Summer Cordial
These cordials are made from fresh fruit that you can grow or buy and are delightful on a hot summer's day. I suppose I am one of the fortunate ones who has an allotment and, on this allotment, I have a few wonderful "crops" I can use.
Rhubarb Cordial
The first is a great crop of rhubarb. Not only is it great for pies and crumbles, (Yummy! Yummy!), but I use it to make a delicious cordial! It is so simpl eand makes about 1 litre

5kg rhubarb roughly chopped
Caster sugar
Lemon juice

Put the rhubarb in a large pan with 75ml water over a low heat and cook slowly until the juices start running. Then turn the heat up and continue cooking until completely soft.

Place a clean muslin (or a jelly bag) over a clean bowl and tip the rhubarb in. Gather up the corners and suspend the bag over the bowl and let the juices drain out. I usually leave this overnight
Measure the strained juice and for every litre of juice add 750g caster sugar and 75ml of lemon juice.

Then over a medium heat stir the mixture to dissolve the sugar. Do not let it boil!
Pour into sterilised jars and seal. Serve 1-part cordial to 3 parts still or sparkling water.
To make it into a Bellini cocktail add it to a glass of Prosecco!

Raspberry Cordial
I also have quite a few Raspberries that I make into a sparkling Raspberry Cordial.

You need: -
300g fresh raspberries
150g granulated sugar
Juice of 1 lemon
Chilled carbonated or soda water
Ice cubes

Put the raspberries into a large pan with the sugar and lemon juice.
Top this up with 500ml of water and bring to the boil.
Stir until the sugar has dissolved, lower the heat and simmer for about 6/8 minutes until the fruit has collapsed.
Turn off the heat and let it infuse for about an hour.

Once cool strain through a muslin bag squeezing as much juice out as possible. Bottle in sterilised bottles and pop in the fridge until you need some.

It should keep for about a week. (If it lasts that long!)

Elderflower Cordial
And my favourite cordial of all is an Elderflower Cordial. This is delightful on a hot summer's day served with ice cubes and a sprig of mint!
You require approximately: -
30 heads of elderflowers
4 pints water
1kg sugar
2lge lemons chopped roughly
85g citric acid

(note, you should be able to get citric acid in a chemist, if not just add an extra lemon. The citric acid is to stop it fermenting, but adding extra lemon juice will have the same effect!)

Put the water and sugar into a large saucepan (preferably with a lid) and bring to the boil, making sure the sugar has dissolved. Then take off the heat.
Add the lemons and acid (if using) then all the flowers. Stir it all together well cover with the lid and leave overnight to steep.

In the morning, strain through a muslin bag and bottle in sterilised bottles.
Dilute with still or sparkling water or add some to a gin and tonic with plenty of ice. The trouble with that is, that one gin is just not enough!!! (or so I've been told…)