Recipe Box: Blackberry Cordial & Simple Syrup

Blackberries, soon to be blackberry cordial! - Blackberry cordial and syrup recipe from pixiespocket.com
Blackberries, soon to be blackberry cordial!

Summer days in these mountains mean many wonderful things – fireflies blinking in the dusk, sweet little songbirds chirping, frogs croaking, and one of my favorites – blackberry picking!

It has been a particularly rainy spring and summer and so even the often hard and sour wild blackberry brambles are covered in more deliciously sweet, fat berries than I’ve ever seen!

Every season, I get a small bit o’berries from the wild bramble bushes in our yard, usually around a pint or two. I pick about a 1/4 cup each evening and throw them into a large container that lives in the freezer. Once I have enough to work with, I can make something big!

#homebrewing tip: Freeze fresh fruit before using it in #wine or #mead. It will release more juice when it thaws! Click To Tweet

Besides my own yard, I know of some other places nearby where I can go and pick to my heart’s content and have enough for a gallon of wine or mead, or a few jars of jam. But now we are going to talk about my annual tradition of making blackberry cordial.

Blackberry cordial and syrup recipe from pixiespocket.com
Nummy vodka is just this easy!

Like I’ve covered before, tinctures, elixirs, and cordials are easy to make!  They are magic in a bottle, bringing a taste summertime to cold winter nights.  A little bit of blackberry cordial in a cup of hot tea or cider can make a bedtime toddy extra special.


Blackberry Infused Vodka

This vodka is sweetened only by the tart berries, making it an interesting ingredient for cocktails. It could almost be considered a bitters, due to the tartness and the tannins in the berry seeds and skins.  If you want something sweeter, then you can add a simple syrup or try the next recipe…

Take a clean jar and fill it with fresh blackberries.

Use a wooden spoon and smush the berries to release their juices.

Cover the smooshed berries with your choice of booze, close it up, and give it all a shake. I usually use a good quality vodka, but brandy works well with blackberries.

Close up your jar, label it, and put it aside for at least a month.

After a while, strain your booze! Clean and sanitize your bottle of choice. Use a funnel with a wire strainer and cheesecloth to strain out the berries and seeds.


Blackberry Cordial

Quite similar to the one above, but this recipe includes sugar.

Take a clean jar and add a handful of berries. Smash them up with a wooden spoon, and then cover them with a tablespoon or so of sugar. Repeat until the jar is about half full or so.

Cover the jar and let it sit for about 30 minutes or so. The sugar will have released a great deal of juice from the berries!

Cover the smooshed berries with your choice of booze, close it up, and shake it until the sugar is dissolved.

Close up your jar, label it, and put it aside for at least a month.

After a while, strain your booze! Clean and sanitize your bottle of choice. Use a funnel with a wire strainer and cheesecloth to strain out the berries and seeds.


Blackberry Simple Syrup

If you want to sweeten your vodka but don’t want to use sugar, here’s a simple syrup recipe. You can make a plain simple syrup  or try this one if you have blackberries left over:

Boil one cup of water with a handful or two of berries. Let it simmer for a bit, until all the berries have popped open and released their juice.

Set the pan aside to cool long enough to safely strain out the berries. Return the liquid to the pan.

Add a half-cup of sugar, honey, agave, or whatever sweetener you prefer. Stir until the sugar is completely dissolved.

Return it to heat and let it come to a boil for one minute. After that, turn to low and let it simmer for a few more minutes.

Allow it to cool down a bit before funneling the syrup into a clean glass bottle with a tight fitting lid.

Label and date your syrup and store it in the fridge!


blackberry syrup
Delicious & Lovely, too!

14 Comments

    1. Hi, Connie! Good questions! Because of the booze content, I’ve had cordials that I sip from every now and then that are years old and never had any problems. I don’t store those in the fridge, either.

      The Simple Syrup will last for months and months in the fridge, but I’ve never kept any longer than that – I tend to use them up! Nor have I tried to can syrup before, but I found a good post here that offers advice on how to do just that! http://www.growingagreenerworld.com/simple-syrup-video/

      Best wishes!

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