Pear Ginger & Sage Cocktail

Pear, Ginger & Sage Cocktail.   Look no further for this  is everything an autumn cocktail should be!  The warmth of the ginger and the slight spice of the sage just work so well with the pear Juice.  It’s a really easy cocktail to throw together  – particularly if you’ve just been making Chocolate Pear Pudding and have some pear juice to hand.  If not substitute cloudy apple juice instead.  Either way you won’t regret it!

The stem ginger syrup is just syrup from a jar of stem ginger.  I actually used the Ginger Cordial from Belvoir as I had it to hand but, should you have neither, a tablespoon of simple syrup with some fresh ginger would work wellô


Ingredients (makes 1)

  • 25ml pear or cloudy apple juice
  • 6 sage leaves
  • 1 tbsp stem ginger syrup or cordial
  • 50ml gin or vodka
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • 6+ cubes of ice


  1. Put all the ingredients into a cocktail shaker
  2. Shake hard and get rid of all your stress
  3. pour into glass and garnish with an extra sage leaf if you want to be fancy
  4. Try not to knock back in one!

if you want to know more about me and my work as an Aromatherapist, please visit https://www.lilaccottageshop.com/

Limoncello – the Homemade Stuff!

I love limoncello but I have been so disappointed by a lot of what is on sale here.   Quite frankly it can taste so synthetic that it’s horrid!

Not so this recipe with its use of what is fast becoming my go-to trio of lemon flavours – lemon verbena, lemon grass and lemon.   You start off by infusing both lemongrass and lemon zest into your vodka/gin for a week before you add a simple syrup and lemon verbena leaves   After a week your limoncello is ready!   Serve chilled from the fridge   Particularly wonderful on a hot summer’s day but good anytime.   The perfect addition to an Italian meal (or if you are like me – the perfect addition to most meals!)

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Elderflower Cordial

Is there anything better than a glass of cold, refreshing elderflower cordial on a summers’ day?  It’s got to be one of the most quintessential drinks of an English June.

A lot of elderflower cordial recipes contain citric acid.  This means the cordial keeps for longer in the fridge and saves on using as many lemons.    I have given you the option to add a couple of tablespoons to this recipe if you want.   Without it the cordial will keep for a few weeks (rather than a couple of months) in the fridge.   I usually put some into resided plastic bottles and store in freezer to avoid this but it does depend if you have enough freezer space!!

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Quick Homemade Lemonade

As the temperatures rise you really can’t beat a jug of cold, homemade lemonade in the garden.  As children one of our greatest treats on hot summer days was to be allowed to sit on the swing seat with its shady canopy, and drink this cold lemonade.  Nowadays I always picture southern belles (???) in elegant long white summer dresses on a veranda offering their guests a glass of this from a jug that is frosted cold and has slices of lemon and ice cubes in it.   I can almost hear the ice chinking as it is being poured.   Delicious.  Refreshing.
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Rhubarb Gin

We all need cheering up on a Monday and the thought of making Rhubarb Gin to drink at the weekend (ok Sunday) does just that for me!  Ridiculously pink and tasting fresh and springlike this makes for a fabulously different  gin and tonic or a twist on a spritz when topped with Prosecco (or soda water if you are feeling more virtuous or have to drive).  My favourite way to use it though is in a rhubarb martini.   I mix equal parts of the rhubarb gin and juices from roasted rhubarb (see TIPS below) and serve it over ice sharpened with a little lemon juice to taste – I use a good squeeze per glass.  I then eat the roasted rhubarb the next day with yoghurt and granola.  So really you can argue that making rhubarb gin is an essential part of your healthy eating regime! But should you prefer not to roast rhubarb or want to make a few rhubarb martinis you can use the rhubarb syrup recipe (again see TIPS below) as a substitute, again using lemon juice when mixing to taste.

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Cider With Rosie

You may not realise it but you can actually use any type of apples to make cider.   What you use normally depends on what you have growing in your garden.  For us here in Suffolk it is a combination of the dessert and cooking apples which we have growing in our back garden.  The blend of their juices gives us what they call an “Eastern Counties” cider that has a clean, sharp taste (as opposed to the richer “West Country” style which is made from cider apples).   As it takes 20lb or 9kg of apples to produce enough juice to fill a 4.5 litre or a gallon demijohn it is a good way of using up any surplus fruit, particularly as you can use windfalls

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Plum Shrub Fruit Liqueurs – Part 1

We have all heard of Sloe Gin but Plum Shrub?  Plum Shrub is very similar and is absolutely delicious and as a bonus not only do you get to drink the fruity, jewel coloured drink itself but the infused plums make a great pudding.  Serve them with icecream or thick cream or even a rice pudding.  Certain people have been known to have the plums over their breakfast porridge but I shall spare their blushes and not name them  (yes M I know the plums are fruit but ….!!) Continue reading

Breakfast Martini


I promised a couple of weeks ago when I shared my marmade recipe that I would write some that used it.  At the time I had in mind a pudding or maybe a baked ham but instead I came across this cocktail which is essentially a marmalade martini.  Salvatore Calabrese is a mixologist and a recent President of The United Kingdom Bartenders’ Guild and the man who has this as his signature cocktail – and jolly nice it is too!!! Continue reading