It was such a wonderful surprise to find a large box of Redbelly Citrus blood oranges on my doorstep last week. I do love blood oranges. I find them richer in flavour than other oranges, and what’s not to love about that colour! Last year I made a beautiful soft pavlova roll with blood orange curd. It was very good, but part of me had wished I’d made blood orange cordial. So that is the first thing I made with them this year. Please make sure you buy Australian grown citrus. Most citrus fruit are in season in winter, which is great because they can provide a wonderful zing to warming winter dishes and they are great way to boost your vitamin C intake during the cold and flu season.
If you pour the hot cordial into sterilised bottles and process them in a water bath, as I’ve done here, the cordial should last for a year in the pantry. If you’re not interested in this process, or you don’t plan on having the cordial around that long, store it in the fridge.
Makes about 2 litres
Peel the zest off the blood oranges. Place it in a large saucepan with the sugar and water. Bring the mixture to the boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Leave the mixture simmering.
Meanwhile, juice the oranges. You want about a litre of juice. Strain the juice and discard the seeds and pulp.
Scoop the orange zest from the simmering syrup. Pour in the strained juice and bring the cordial back to the boil. Skim the surface of the cordial to remove any impurities.
Pour the hot cordial into sterilised glass bottles and loosely screw on the lids. Place the hot bottles in a large saucepan and fill the pot with enough water for it to come nearly to the top of the bottles. Simmer for 30 minutes. Remove the bottles from the pot, immediately tightening the lids. Leave the bottles to cool completely.