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Ginger syrup

Eating real food is always a compromise.  Soft drink is obviously a bad choice, its full of sugar or artificial sweeteners, and various artificial colours, flavours and additives.  If I feel like something fizzy, I usually drink one of my fermented fizzy drinks, however these are not to everyone's taste.  Specifically, Pete doesn't like them, but he doesn't want to drink soft drink either, so he's been buying cordials to mix with the fizzy water he makes with his beer keg carbon dioxide (see what happens when I leave him alone in the house during the week!).  Personally I don't think that cordials are much better than soft drinks, the only advantage is that you can make a more dilluted drink and not have quite as much rubbish if your drink.  I've tried to get him into apple cide vinegar, but he's not a fan of than either!

I decided to try to make a better version of cordial, which might at least have some goodness in it.  If you put enough sugar in a syrup, it can be kept at room temperature.  The only thing to remember is that you only need a tiny amount because it is so concentrated in sugar, and you need to balance that sugar content with lots of your other flavours as you're not going to put much in the drink.  

I made my syrup using ginger, lime peel and rosella petals.  It wasn't exactly succesful, as Pete still prefers his bought syrups!  (but I like it).  And it grew mould during our hot spell (over 35degC for a week), so in future I would increase the sugar content even further or just keep it in the fridge.

The sugar ratio I used was 2 parts sugar to 1 part water, and I just simmered the ingredients together in a pot for an hour or so until is smelt lovely.  Then I let it cool and strained it into a glass bottle.  I have no advice for actually making a husband-friendly cordial syrup and I would prefer to drink my fermented fizzy drinks, but this is refreshing in still or sprakling water and quicker to make.

Do you make syrups?  Any tips?  Does your husband enjoy real food too?

The Chicken Chick

From The Farm Blog Hop 
Homestead Barnhop 143
Simple Saturday's Bloghop
The Homeacre Hop 54


  1. I think the combo sounds lovely and I am a big fan of ginger. I make cordials seasonally and find as you do that true flavours negate the need for a lot of syrup. It's not the sugar you are looking for but the flavour. I find sugar something that people are "acclimatised" to and some sugar needs are a direct result of biochemical imbalance. From memory you are into the lacto ferments and pickles too so I'm guessing your body urges for sugar are quite low. When you are eating a wholesome unprocessed diet things like commercially prepared sauces and cordials taste like mostly sugar and are way too sweet. We don't have rosellas in Tas but I could certainly give the ginger and lime combo a go.

    1. yes I agree Tanya, the flavour is more important than the sugar.

  2. I've not really made many homemade drinks (except cider and wine) but it's something I'd like to try. I drink water most of the time but I love a glass of vimteo when I get home (A strong mixed fruit cordial from over here if you guys don't have it) - if you could make something simular to that then I'd drink it but I only really have it once a day.
    I'm going to have a look at your fizzy driks as when I've got more time when I'm with the kids it might be a fun project to make with them.

    1. sometimes the bottles open with a POP and an explosion! I'm sure your kids will love it!

  3. Hi Liz,
    Love the look and idea of making my own syrups and cordials. I alas am one of those people addicted to the love of fizzy drinks(mostly cola types), but have periods where I totally stop and wake up to myself and drink soda water or soda and lime for months on end so that I still have the fizz.(I do adore plain tank water too and drink tons of it., and then I slowly inch my way back to them aagain. I live in town now and it's all too convenient, I hope that when we move permanently to the farm this bad vice of mine may cease...well here's hoping !!. I will definately be trying some of your suggestions.

    1. I understand the temptation, every time I see Pete drinking cola I crave it, even though I hardly every have any, I think the only way is to not have any around....

  4. Thanks for the recipe Liz. Might just give it a go. I do like a little fizz in summer but nothing too sugary. We've been making apple cider which is just right. No added sugar and just enough fizz, and not a lot of alcohol.

    1. Sounds good, I hope we have excess apples for cider one day....

  5. Ginger cordial sounds good. I make a lemon cordial ( which uses citric acid to help preserve it. If you're going to use it quickly, use extra lemons and leave out the citric acid.

  6. I make lacto fermented ginger beer :) Very Good :) and I make the recipe below, it requires refrigeration but less sugar more honey which is good with our own hives. I have made it with pure honey and it is great but my wife prefers her bickfords cordial :)

    It is still a lot better than soft drink and a small mercy is our kids don't really like soft drink when it is available they do like the honey cordial. You can also add molasses and I am playing with coconut sugar for cordials.

  7. I love making my ginger syrup with ginger (homegrown of course) and lemon. I've seen people use citric acid as a preservative, but it doesn't last long enough here to warrant trying it. Maybe next time I might :)

  8. Ginger cordial sounds lovely! My hubby prefers the bought cordials talking sense into them is there?! I made some almond, cardamom and rose cordial this's so refreshing!

  9. We make a bush lime cordial, which is a recipe I adapted from a lemon (or lime) cordial, so you could use them - lots of sugar yes, but only sugar and fruit juice. I'm away, but when I get home I'll send you the recipe - it's easy, but I do usually keep it in the fridge. And I'm sure Pete will like it! We mix it with soda water for extra fizz. Do you make kombucha? We really like it and if you manage to get it right, it's nice and sweet, without the sugary taste, and just a little bit of fizz. Very refreshing in this heat! I think I will try your cordial recipe - love ginger and lime!

  10. I think hubby's are the fussiest when it comes to food & drink!

  11. My mum years ago made what we as kids called Ginger Beer, She had a "starter" brewing in a jar, I recall the sultanas in it. What she did after that don't know. Do remember the odd bottle popping its cork, with ginger beer, spraying all over the pantry. Will have to try and find out the recipe.

  12. Ha ha you know I have the same issue and sadly there is now a bottle of bright green sugary rubbish in the pantry courtesy of Hubby. But I think your brew sounds delish.

  13. I bought my husband a soda siphon bottle for Christmas because we cannot ferment drinks (no alcohol allowed in our diets anymore) and he was drinking far too much soda. I do make syrups and they do contain sugar but you have to understand that in the U.S. most soft drinks don't use real sugar so much as byproducts of corn and other things to get a sickly sweet flavor. To use real cane sugar in small amounts is not a big deal for us even if not ideal. We can use honey or maple syrup which we harvest on our land but in some ways, sugar is sugar.
    I make small batch syrups that are meant to be consumed quickly so I don't worry about using a specific amount. If I had no refrigeration I would just make a small batch a day rather than increase the sugar.
    Your recipe sounds wonderful. I might give it a try:)

  14. We both love real food and we both love fermented fizzy drinks. I really enjoy my kefir while he prefers kombucha. This looks good though! I'll have to give it a try. Thanks so much for sharing this at the HomeAcre Hop! We'd love to have you back again tomorrow!

  15. wow lots of lovely summer drink suggestions, thanks everyone!


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