Homemade raspberry cordial


Inspired by Down to Earth‘s natural raspberry cordial from scratch, I decided to try a reduced version of the recipe. I made a few mistakes with my first attempt. I didn’t strain the raspberries as Rhonda suggests, but I found it way too bitsy for my liking. I also accidentally forgot the lemon, but I knew as soon as I tasted it that it was what was missing. Incidentally I was pleasantly surprised to find that Creative Gourmet has an organic range of raspberries. Although they are all the way from Chile.  Now I know how simple and delicious this is to make I’m sure to be trying it again soon.

300g raspberries, frozen or fresh
1 1/4 cups sugar
3 cups water
1/2 cup lemon, juiced

  1. Defrost the raspberries, if using frozen.
  2. Make a sugar syrup by using boiling water and sugar. Alternatively, heat the water and sugar in a pot. Stir until the sugar has dissolved completely.
  3. Add the raspberries and lemon juice.
  4. Blend with a stick blender.
  5. Strain the mixture through a fine sieve to remove the seeds and fibre (optional).
  6. Pour mixture into a bottle and store in the refrigerator.
  7. Use a small amount of the concentrate and add water or mineral water.

How to make your own pH test

Alys Fowler has some instructions on how to make your own pH test:

To check your soil pH, you can buy a kit from the garden centre, but the easiest way is to make one yourself, using red cabbage. This contains a water-soluble pigment, called a flavin, that turns red in acid conditions, has a purplish tinge in neutral conditions, and shows bluish green to greenish yellow in alkaline conditions.

Bring two cups of chopped red cabbage to the boil and let them cool. Drain off the water – and eat the cabbage! Put about a tablespoon of soil in a cup and half-fill this with water. Stir the soil around so that it’s suspended in the water. Now add about 3mm of cabbage water.

The liquid will turn a purplish red with a slight tinge of blue for a neutral soil. Greenish-yellow is very alkaline and very red is acid. You should check soil at various locations around your garden. Be aware that builder’s rubble contains a lot of lime which will give alkaline results, so make sure you take a few different readings.

Thrifty Gardener
– by Alys Fowlder

Homemade: The Handmade Help recipe book

A recipe from the archives of Gustoso is featured in the Homemade: the Handmade Help recipe book.

Early this year was marked by the Black Saturday bushfires. Uncharacteristic hot days and strong winds whipped flames through Victoria  and resulted in Australia’s worst loss of life from a bushfire. Over 2000 houses were destroyed!

The online art and craft  community joined together to assist in the Handmade Help Bushfire Appeal.

Hardcover and PDF versions of the recipe book are now available for pre-order.

All money raised from sales of the book will be donated to The Salvation Army.