How have you been doing with your soft fruit this year? Ours seem to have all come in a bit of a rush…. here for a few days and then gone.
We had so few strawberries this year (again). We had a great crop of raspberries as always but battled with the birds to have them. Both our gooseberry bushes were stripped overnight of fruit by the birds, 3 of our 4 blackcurrant bushes were also stripped bare! So I guess I was lucky to get my 2 lbs of fruit to make our homemade ribena.
I’m not a big fan of blackcurrant jam – although I do make a mixed berry jam with a mix of red and black currants which is nice. So over the past few years I’ve tended to use the bulk of our blackcurrants to make this cordial. This also makes me ‘the best aunty in the world’ as my nieces love this when they come to visit :)
The original recipe I used for this is from Darina Allen’s Ballymaloe Cookery Course with a little adaptation, as per usual I didn’t have all the ‘right’ ingredients.
- 2 lbs blackcurrants
- 2 lbs sugar
- 6 pints water
- 6 fl. oz. red wine vinegar (white wine vinegar was in the original recipe)
And this is the best part of the whole thing…. you don’t have to top and tail the fruit! Is there anyone in the world who likes topping and tailing blackcurrants? It has to be the most fiddly job of all.
Just put your blackcurrants into a large pot, add the water – bring to the boil, and allow to boil for 15 minutes.
Strain your liquid into a clean saucepan and add the sugar and wine vinegar. Boil for another 3 minutes.
Pour into sterilised bottles and seal.
This amount makes 4 to 5 litres, and we usually lasts us until next year’s harvest.
Serve diluted in iced water or sparkling water.
There are still a few blackcurrants left on the bush…. I think I might try a cassis with those. What do you do with your soft fruits?