Watermelon Lemon Cordial

Processing: Boiling Water Canner 15mins
Storage: 12 months+
Yield: 26 cups
Summer in a jar! Enjoy this fruity cordial with water, lemonade, or ginger ale - or mix with a sparkling wine or make a batch of sangria for a party, perhaps?    
1.8kg (4lbs) watermelon chunks (including any juice)

1 cup water
12 cups lemon juice (fresh or bottled)
18 cups sugar
Juice watermelon.
Remove flesh from watermelon, roughly chopping flesh. Weigh chunks and any juice into a large pan. Add the water. Simmer for 5 minutes, mashing down a little during the cooking. Puree. Allow to drip through a fine sieve (don't press) or jelly bag for a few hours (preferably 6 hours or so) to collect juice.
TIP: Use the watermelon pulp leftover to make watermelon fruit leather
Prepare jars.
Prepare jars by covering in water and boiling for 10 minutes. Then turn the heat off, keep pot covered and leave jars hot until ready to fill.

Measure ingredients into pot.
Measure the watermelon juice into a large pan. For every 2 cups of watermelon juice, add 4 cups of lemon juice and 6 cups of sugar. Whisk well, heat gently to dissolve sugar. Continue heating until very hot (but not too high, to prevent foaming on the surface).
Prepare lids.

Warm lids in a bowl of boiling water. Let the lids heat through for a few minutes while you fill the jars, removing the lids from the water when you are ready to place them onto the jars to seal.    
Ladle hot cordial into hot jars.
Immediately ladle hot cordial into hot jars, leaving a 1/4 inch (0.5cm) headspace (distance from the cordial and jar rim). Wipe rims with clean paper towel then seal with the warm lids.

Boiling water bath processing.
Process in hot water bath canner for 10 minutes. Start timing when the water returns to a full boil. Once the time is up, turn the heat off and rest jars in the water for 5 minutes before placing onto a towel-covered bench overnight to cool.
Next day check for seals.
Check jars have sealed before labelling and storing in a cool, dry and dark place for up to 12 months. Jar lids should not flex up nor down when pressed and should be tightly vacuum sealed.
Serving ideas.
Dilute 1 part cordial + 5-6 parts water/soda water/lemonade/sparkling wine. Add ice and serve.
Flavour ideas.
  • watermelon + lime
  • watermelon + lime + vanilla bean
  • watermelon + lemon + mint
Kaya Wanjoo. Food Preserving kaditj kalyakoorl moondang-ak kaaradj midi boodjar-ak nyininy, yakka wer waabiny, Noongar moort. Ngala kaditj baalap kalyakoorl nidja boodjar wer kep kaaradjiny, baalap moorditj nidja yaakiny-ak wer moorditj moort wer kaditj Birdiya wer yeyi.
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