Cranberry and ginger cordial can be mixed with hot or cold water to make a refreshing drink with the tang of ginger balanced out with the fruity cranberry. Easy to make and a great flavor!
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One thing I miss from the UK is the range of cordials that have been becoming popular in recent years. For those not familiar with cordials, they are basically flavored syrups you can mix with hot or cold water to make a nice drink. I guess you could call it a simple syrup, as is more common here in the US.
Ginger cordial, ginger and lemongrass, elderflower and a few others were all favorites to have in the house when we lived in London. They make a great alternative to juice, to mix with sparkling water for a less sugary sparkling drink, or make into a caffeine-free hot drink that still has some taste (I struggle with a lot of fruit teas for tempting me by smelling nice but tasting of water).
It would also be pretty good as a syrup for making cocktails – I have yet to try, but I am thinking gin or vodka, some cordial and soda could be pretty good.
So without access to any cordial here, recently I decided to look into making some myself. I could only really find a recipe for ginger cordial, but I felt like experimenting a bit more. And, I had a pile of cranberries I needed to use up. I also wanted to see if I could limit the sugar a bit but still have something that tasted good.
The result was this cranberry and ginger cordial with a little orange in the background. It’s got the sharpness from the ginger but also the fruitiness from the cranberries and I am sure we will get through it fairly soon.
Drink it cold or drink it warm
One of the things I like about cordial is that since you mix it with water, you can easily make it weaker or stronger to taste. This is quite a plus with a toddler who often wants to have some of what we are having, plus just in general for different tastes.
Also, as its getting colder, I am looking forward to having it warm, possibly with some shortbread on the side. Speaking of which, the leftover cranberry mixture, minus the ginger and orange peel pieces, can be used to make cranberry filled shortbread. All round, a good few minutes well spent making it.
How long does cordial keep?
As I have made here, the cordial will keep refrigerated for a week or two. Just keep it in a bottle or jar and if any mould forms, it’s time to throw it away.
When I was looking up some ginger cordial recipes as inspiration, a number had cream of tartar in them which I believe helps preserve the liquid for a bit longer. So feel free to give it a try, I just didn’t have any and wasn’t that bothered about it keeping too long as the quantity below is relatively easy to get through in a week or two for us.
Cranberry and ginger cordial is very quick and easy to make with only a few ingredients. It has a lovely tang, isn’t too sweet and makes a refreshing or comforting drink, perfect any time of year.
Try these other drinks with cranberry:
- Cranberry gin
- Cranberry whiskey sour
- Warm spiced cranberry cocktail
- Cranberry Moscow mule
- Plus get more drink recipes in the archives.
And if you’re a ginger fan, try my ginger syrup to use in cocktails or as a cordial.
Cranberry and ginger cordial
- 1 cup cranberries fresh or frozen
- 1 in fresh ginger piece approx 1in/2.5cm, sliced and large slices chopped
- 1 cup water
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 slice orange zest
- 1/4 cup orange juice approx 1/2 orange
- Put all ingredients in a small pan and warm over a medium heat, stirring initially to ensure sugar has dissolved.
- As mixture comes to the boil, you will hear the cranberries burst. Once boiling, press cranberries to bottom or side of pan to help any that haven't popped do so and release the flavors.
- Boil for 3-5mins then remove from heat and strain mixture into a bottle or other container.
- The cordial can be mixed with hot or cold water, still or sparkling, on approx 1 part syrup to 5 parts water ratio.
- Cordial will keep for a couple weeks in the refrigerator.
- The leftover cranberry mixture after straining can be re-used as a jam if the pieces of ginger and orange rind are removed, again store in a box in the refrigerator.
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