Quince, ginger and bay cordial

Quince, ginger and bay cordial

By
From
Spring
Makes
1 litre
Photographer
Andy Sewell

I started making this lovely earthy, early winter cordial many years ago. In fact, it was one of the first cordials I attempted. Like many good things, it came about from a bi-product of something else: quince paste. To make this paste, quinces are first cooked slowly in sugar syrup, which is then discarded. Throwing away this beautiful dark amber liquid has always seemed an awful waste to me, so I set about turning it into a drink. The bay and ginger, which lend a slightly peppery warmth, were later additions. This cordial keeps well in the fridge for a couple of weeks.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
6 quinces
350g golden caster sugar
1.8 litres water
5cm piece of fresh ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
4 bay leaves
1-2 sprigs bay leaves, to serve
1 lemon, juiced

To serve

Quantity Ingredient
crushed ice
sparkling water

Method

  1. Using a clean, dry cloth, wipe the quinces all over to remove the bristly down that often covers the outer layer of skin. Place the fruit in a large saucepan, add the sugar and pour over enough water to cover. Add the ginger and bay. Bring to the boil over a medium heat, stirring once or twice to help dissolve the sugar.
  2. Turn the heat down and simmer until the quinces are tender and falling apart, topping up the water from time to time as necessary during cooking. As they cook, the quinces will slowly turn from the palest green to the most glorious burnt amber colour. You will need to be patient, as the cooking process will take a couple of hours.
  3. Once cooked, remove from the heat and lift the fruit out into a bowl, using a slotted spoon. Don’t discard the poached quinces – either serve them just as they are, or with thick, creamy Greek-style yoghurt, a few chopped pecans and a drizzle or two of honey – perfect for breakfast.
  4. For the cordial, let the quince syrup cool, then pass through a strainer into a jug or bowl and add the lemon juice.
  5. To serve, put plenty of crushed ice into a jug or directly into glasses. Pour on the cordial and top up with sparkling water. Stir well, add a sprig of bay leaves and serve. Alternatively, you can add a little cordial to a glass of sparkling wine.
Tags:
Skye Gyngell
seasonal
Spring
London
Back to top
    No results found
    No more results
      No results found
      No more results
        No results found
        No more results
          No results found
          No more results
            No results found
            No more results
              No results found
              No more results
              Please start typing to begin your search
              We're sorry but we had trouble running your search. Please try again