Plum cordial is probably not something you’ll find on the shelves of your local Tesco Metro, which makes it the perfect cordial to show off a little with. Serve it with sparkling mineral water and lots of ice to cool off with on a hot summer afternoon.
Makes around 700ml of cordial
- 1kg of plums
- 250ml water
- 600g granulated white sugar per litre of juice
1. Place the plums in a heavy-bottomed saucepan and add the water.
2. Bring to the boil and simmer until the plums are soft and falling apart. You can help them along by squishing them with a potato masher or the back of a large serving spoon.
3. Sterilise your jelly bag while you are waiting for them to boil. I just sit it in boiling water for a few minutes before putting it in its stand over a bowl or saucepan.
4. Ladle the plum mixture into the jelly bag (or colander lined with a tea towel) and leave to drip for at least four hours. You can squeeze the bag to help speed things up but you might end up with a cloudy cordial, which will taste fine but won’t look as nice.
5. Add the sugar to the liquid (the quantity suggested is just that, a suggestion; please feel free to add more or less according to your taste and how ripe the plums are. Warm through to dissolve it but try not to let it boil.
6. Leave to cool before pouring into sterilized bottles. It will keep for a few weeks but if you want to keep it for any longer I would empty it into a Tupperware container and freeze.
7. Serve hot or cold, garnishing according to the occasion.
You can add cherries to make a Plum and Cherry Cordial, or a spice bag with cinnamon, cloves and other warming spices to the plums at stage 1 to make a fabulous alcohol-free cordial to be served hot in lieu of mulled wine at Christmas.
You can use over-ripe or bruised plums for this recipe if you have to buy them as your local greengrocer will often sell them off very cheaply if they’re too far gone to be eaten.