Tuesday, January 19, 2016

nineteenth - how to make rhubarb cordial

Hello sweet peas,

I hope you've had a gorgeous day.

I was going to write about something different tonight, but then we made rhubarb cordial from that crate-ful we picked yesterday and now I can't think of anything else.

So just in case you find yourself with a clump or a bunch of rhubarb and your family are as sick of rhubarb cakes as mine are, I thought you might like to make some cordial yourself. 

As with most of the recipes I post here, this one is more of a guide than an exact science. 

Here's how we made it;


  • a bunch of rhubarb  - we used 1.5kg
  • a couple of lemons
  • some sugar
  • a couple of sterilised bottles

  • roughly chop your rhubarb into small pieces and pour into a saucepan
  • add the zest of one lemon
  • pour about a litre of water into the rhubarb 
  • cook the rhubarb on low heat until it gets soft and mushy. stir it often to make sure it doesn't stick to the bottom of the saucepan and add more water if it feels like it is
  • set aside to cool for a bit
  • strain rhubarb mush through a muslin cloth over a big bowl until most of the liquid has dripped through. we left it overnight
  • pour the beautiful pink rhubarb juice back into a saucepan and cook over a low heat.
  • compost the mush
  • add the juice of two lemons 
  • slowly add sugar to your taste. i think we used half a cup in the end or maybe a little bit more
  • once the sugar has dissolved, turn off the heat and allow to cool a bit
  • strain the liquid and pour into bottles
  • make some cute labels and then you're done

Next time we make it I might cook the liquid for longer and reduce it into more of a syrup, but today we were making it up as we went along and were eager to get to the taste test bit of the process.

Late this afternoon, after the heat had finally broken, we sat outside in the garden and sampled our cordial. The girls drank theirs with icy cold water and we added vodka, a wedge of lime and some ice.  It was gorgeous. Exactly the tangy but sweet taste of summer that I'd hoped for.


And thanks you guys for the book recommendations. I'm excited to have so many to choose from.

Big smooches,



  1. Yum, that sounds really delicious! It's icy winter here, so I rather think of drinking tea and hot coffee, but as soon as spring hits our part of the world I really have to try this! Thanks for sharing your recipe!

  2. This is so pretty and looks so refreshing! For the first time I feel inclined to try growing rhubarb.

    Sarah x

  3. The cordial sounds delicious and so refreshing. Your recipe will be added to my list of things to do with rhubarb, thanks for sharing. It was -5 degrees here last night so will have a wait a while to try it!

  4. Looks tasty! Very much the way I make and can kompot (the drink) from muscadines (a wild grape here) or from any fruit or combinations there of really. My favorite is made with apples, blueberries, blackberries and muscadines combined. Enjoy!

  5. It's winter here right now too but in the summer I always have a glut of rhubarb. I'll try to remember this recipe for then. Thank you!

  6. Its hard to think of sitting outside here, we have had frost on the ground all day! Rhubarb cordial is delicious though and a real taste of summer. I bought some a while back, but I will try and make some when our rhubarb arrives here. Right now it is more like Chai tea or hot chocolate season!!! Thanks for the recipe

  7. I have rhubarb seedlings in pots from a local grower that I need to plant out. I was meant to dig new beds for asparagus and rhubarb last autumn but life was busy. This autumn, for sure. Changes have been made this week that I hope will make life a little easier.

  8. I love rhubarb cordial. I use a lot of my fruit for making cordials, mixing some of them as well. Rhubarb and blackcurrant is very nice.

  9. By the way, roast rhubarb is delicious and can be used like jam. Another alternative to rhubarb pies.

  10. What a beautifully coloured cordial (try saying that after a few vodkas). Must try making some cordial when our Rhubarb grows in the spring, and when my MIL's grows because she has the rhubarb bush of legends. It's massive.

  11. I know this is an old post, but how long does the cordial last? We have a huge rhubarb glut and rhubarb crumble is getting boring!


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Kate XX

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