“What rhubarb, senna, or what purgative drug, would scour these English hence?

Macbeth, William Shakespeare

Hello chums! Well firstly I must admit that since my last post I have barely held a needle or hook and when I have it has only been for a mere moment. Alas this means I am without any exciting sewn/knitted/crocheted or even screen printed items to share with you. It a sad state of affairs, and really not good for my sanity…CRAFTING KEEPS ME CALM!!! Unfortunately I am currently drowning in a sea of deadlines so it feels like I’ll never have the time EVER!…but soon…soon I will be free again (If I haven’t gone stark raving bonkers in the meantime)!

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No craft, so here’s a picture of Bruno in a snood!

While working for these deadlines I have allowed myself the occasional TV show as “background” (by which I mean I watch it with work in front of me so I don’t feel guilty!). One such show, despite me finding the concept highly ridiculous, is “The Big Allotment Challenge”…if you haven’t guessed it, it is ANOTHER Bake Off slash Sewing Bee spin off (there’s a serious glut of these things on TV here in the UK, but despite the increasingly bizarre concepts I secretly can’t get enough of them!). As well as whipping out some prize winning carrots, creating a floral centrepiece for a dinner table and cooking up a nice relish, the contestants this week had to make a cordial. Is there anything more summery than cordial…well yes, but it is still very summery and given that the weather seems to be improving I decided I simply must make some (plus a nice sugar kick while essay writing is always helpful)!

Now I’d generally go elderflower, but I ain’t got none…what I do have is rhubarb (YUMMY!) so rhubarb cordial it was…

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As a side note, rhubarb is incredible! despite the fact my fingers reside on the opposite side of the colour wheel from green, it continues to grow and produce a bumper crop EVERY year…it grows faster than you can eat the stuff!

but I digress, back to the cordial…

Rhubarb Cordial
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Ingredients:
600g Rhubarb
375g Caster Sugar
750ml Water
1 small orange/Satsuma or the like
1 tbsp. Lemon juice

Appropriately sized bottle (1ltr)(sterilized)
Seive/Muslin (food quality)

So as recipes go this is so simple a child could do it, you know…if it was appropriate to let children mess around with hobs and boiling and what not…my point is it’s simple…probably could have just left it at that and spared you all this rather pointless ramble…

Righto…chop your rhubarb (which I hope is clean…no slugs or snails please!) into approximately 1″ pieces and bung in a pan. Sprinkle with the sugar and pour over the water…hopefully you’ve chosen a big enough pan…next add the zest of the orange, then slice it in half and add that too! Finally add the lemon juice (I really like jif lemons…I find them aesthetically pleasing)…

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Now we need to get cooking…bring to the boil and then let it simmer for 10 to 15 mins…

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Now comes the straining bit…depending on what you have to hand either sieve it or preferably strain it through muslin…let it do its thing, dripping away for about an hour to get all that scrummy goodness!

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And finally…all that’s left to do is pop it in a bottle! It should last around a week in the fridge, although this bottle was long gone well before the week was up! Replacing the lemon juice with citric acid will extend it’s life should you require it!

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When diluting use about 1 part cordial to 2 parts water…you can drink it hot or cold…add it to cocktails…gin and rhubarb, count me in! mmmm…gin!

I should probably get back to some revision now…*sigh*…I have timetabled a small amount of craft time into my week though, so fingers crossed I’ll not be so craft-less next time!

Till then, BYYYYYYYEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!