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Saturday, 8 September 2012

Raspberry Cordial

Earlier this week I ran out of Raspberry Cordial. By the end of the week I had made some more as I really didn't want to be without this surprisingly useful ingredient for long.

So what can you do with Raspberry Cordial?

Firstly, you can drink it - either diluted with water as a soft drink, or splashed into alcoholic drinks as a mixer. On the drinking theme, you can also put a little into milk to make a lovely raspberry milkshake. This is perhaps how I use up most of my stocks.

Along similar lines, it can be used to flavour plain yoghurt or rippled through ice-cream. A little dish of it is lovely to use as a dip with other fruit such as slices of apple or banana or even just mini doughnuts or biscuits. And a drizzle of it can lift a fruit salad.

I have in the past also made a very quick and easy cheesecake by mixing it with some marscarpone - and we all know how much I love cheesecake!

Mmmm... did someone say cheesecake?

The front cover of the August Good Food Magazine has on it a Peach Melba Cheesecake and it has been taunting me all month. Peach Melba - a dish traditionally consisting of peaches, vanilla ice-cream and raspberry sauce... So, having re-stocked with Raspberry Cordial, I now had an easy way to adapt the recipe to make it even easier to make.

Peach Melba Cheesecake

55g melted butter
55g digestive biscuits
55g ginger biscuits
300g soft cheese
55g icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
150ml double cream
Raspberry Cordial
200g diced peaches

Line the base of a loose bottomed circular tin. Blitz the biscuits in a food processor and mix thoroughly with the melted butter. Press into the bottom of the tin and chill in the refrigerator. In a bowl, combine the cheese, sugar and vanilla. Add the cream and whisk until thick. Drop in half the peaches and several splashes of raspberry cordial then spoon the mixture onto the base, allowing the peaches and cordial to slightly mix in as it does in. Smooth the cheesecake level and refrigerate for several hours or overnight. To serve, cut into slices and drizzle a little raspberry cordial on to each slice and spoon on a few chunks of peaches.

Raspberry Cordial

2 lb (900g) raspberries
1 pint (660ml) red grape juice
Granulated sugar

Gently heat the raspberries in the red grape juice in a large pan for a few minutes until the raspberries have broken up. Strain the liquid through a nylon (not metal) sieve. For every pint of liquid, weigh out 8 oz granulated sugar. Clean the pan and return the liquid to it, along with the sugar. Bring to the boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar then remove from the heat. Pour into warmed bottles and seal. Refrigerate once cooled.

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