Juicy limes can be easily preserved as lime juice cordial. This strong, tart concentrate is commonly served with mineral water and ice or added to alcoholic drinks i.e. gimlet cocktails or lemon, lime and bitters.
Ingredients for  LIME CORDIAL

Yield: around 6-7 cups

Yield: around 13-14 cups

Lime Juice, Fresh

2 2/3 cups

5 1/3 cups

Sugar, White

4 cups

8 cups


1 1/3 cups

2 2/3 cups

Citric Acid

2 teaspoons

4 teaspoons

Tartaric Acid (Optional)

1 teaspoon

2 teaspoons

1.  Clean jars (or bottles) and equipment by washing in hot soapy water and rinsing well before use.
2.  Juice limes: rinse fruit in water and drain. Allow limes to come to room temperature so they are easier to juice (and give a bigger yield of juice). Discard damaged fruit (spoilt fruit will affect the flavour, reduce the storage period and increase the risk of spoilage).
Cut limes in half and juice with a manual (or electric) citrus juicer.
Strain lime juice to remove pulp.
TIP: Juice can be refrigerated overnight then strained before bottling the next day.
3.  Prepare jars (if they require pre-heating, i.e. twist top jars) in a pot lined with a cloth. Cover jars with water and bring to a boil, boiling for 10 minutes. Once the time is up, turn the heat off and leave jars in the hot water until ready to fill.
4.  Place jar lids into a heat-proof bowl. Cover with boiling water. Remove the lids from the water when you are ready to place them onto the jars to seal.  
5.  Measure lime juice, sugar, water, citric acid and tartaric acid into a pan and whisk to combine. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to gentle simmer and heat until sugar has dissolved fully. Remove from heat.
6.  Remove jars from hot water and place onto a heatproof surface i.e. tea towel. Pour the hot lime cordial into the hot jars to 0.5cm (1/4 inch) from the rim.
TIP: Use a jug and funnel to fill jars.
7.  Wipe jar rims with a clean, damp cloth to remove any sticky residue.
8.  Remove lids from hot water and seal jars i.e. twist to secure “fingertip tight”.
9.  Return jars of lime cordial into the large pot of boiling water and boil for the processing time stated below. Start the timer once the water comes back to a full boil.
10.  Turn off the heat source once the time is up. Remove jars from hot water after 5 more minutes. Cool jars overnight on a heatproof surface i.e. wooden board or towel. Do not adjust lids during this time.
11.  The next day, check jars have sealed before labelling and dating clearly.
12.  Store jars of lime cordial in a cool, dark and dry place (i.e. pantry) for up to 12 months. Jar lids should remain tightly sealed during storage, and not flex up or down when pressed (which indicates jar seal failure, do not consume).
13.  Refrigerate jars upon opening and consume contents within 3-4 weeks.
Processing Time for  LIME CORDIAL  in a Boiling Water Canner

≤ 1,000 feet
1,001 - 3,000 feet
3,001 - 6,000 feet
≥ 6,000 feet
Hot Pack
≤ 1 Litre
5 minutes
10 minutes
10 minutes
15 minutes
Add a little of one (or more) of these ingredients (at Step 5) to add flavour to your cordial!
o    Blueberry juice + lime juice + honey + sugar
o    Lime juice + strawberry juice + sugar
o    This recipe can also be used with other varieties of citrus (replace water partly or totally with other 100% fruit juice) i.e. lemon, orange, grapefruit, ;
o    Add ginger (freshly grated or powdered, to taste);
o    Add vanilla;
o    Add mint (fresh leaves to infuse and remove before bottling is best);
o    Replace a third of the sugar with honey or maple syrup;
o    Replace water with other 100% fruit juice i.e. apricot, blueberry, guava, honeydew melon, kiwifruit, mango, passionfruit, pineapple, raspberry, strawberry, watermelon;
o    Use brown sugar, coconut sugar or raw sugar instead of white sugar;
o    Dilute 1 part cordial with 5-6 parts water, soda water, ginger ale, lemonade or sparkling wine. Add ice and serve;
o    Lime and tonic (lime cordial + tonic water);
o    Add a shot of lime cordial in your favourite light lager;
o    Cocktails i.e. gimlet, cement mixer, key lime pie martini and snakebite.
o    Citric acid helps to preserve the cordial, enhancing the tart flavour of the lime juice. It’s available in supermarkets and available in bulk from homebrew stores (and online);
o    Tartaric acid also adds a tart flavour and a touch of bitterness, so is an optional addition to this recipe, which results in a cordial closest in similarity to store bought lime cordial;
o    Maximum juice extraction: pick limes during the day or remove from refrigerator and come to room temperature. Rolling limes between your hand and the cutting board also helps.
Author: Megan Radaich        
Image credit: Megan Radaich        
Publication: www.foodpreserving.org
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