In a moment of panic during last week’s plum glut, I rushed out and bought lots of extra sugar for preserving but ended up not needing as much as I thought I would. There will be more preserving to do before long but I’m trying to gradually work though it so not all my storage space is given over to bags of the stuff.
This weekend’s experiment has been mint cordial. Several handfuls of mint fresh from the garden, washed and then steeped in enough boiling water to just about cover it until it has cooled down. The liquid is then collected (squeezing the last drops out) and an equal weight of sugar is dissolved in it. Finally, the mixture is boiled for a couple of minutes before transferring to a sterilised bottle, capped, cooled and then kept in the fridge.
The resulting syrup is more of a yellow-green than bright green (I eschewed the suggestion of food colouring) but it works very nicely; I’ve tried it so far with sparkling water and soda water. It is sugary but you don’t need much for a subtle taste. I imagine several of the other herbs I’ve got growing would also work well with a similar treatment.