|Real orange squash!|
Not generally a household that consumes fizzy drinks, considering them a right rare treat, I figure this is a unique way that they can still get a treat 'fix' every now and then, reducing packaging, energy and food miles associated with bought soft drinks at the same time. The soda making device carbonates ordinary household tap water to be consumed as is or flavoured. Of course, the sickly sweet concentrate bottles are available to 'complete' the process but what got me curious was a way of making our own healthier versions of the syrups, using 'real' ingredients and sweetened with real sugar rather than synthetic substitutes.
In one of my old preserving books I came across a recipe for squash which looked fairly simple:
6 smallish oranges (or four large)
sugar to measure - 1 cup to every cup of juice
2 cups water
15g citric acid
Nothing too scary there! I got to work peeling six oranges and removing the white pith. The thin outer skin was then placed into the food processor along with the flesh, seeds removed and 2 cups of water. Actually, I processed the ingredients in two batches as my little food processor doesn't have a super large capacity.
It was whizzed and whizzed...and whizzed again until I was absolutely satisfied that the mixture wasn't going to get any finer.
The fleshy, liquidy pulp was then passed through a sieve into a bowl to remove most of the solids.
The strained juice was placed into a jug with a couple of scoops of pulp for good measure (it is squash we're making, after all!). To every cup of juice, one cup of sugar was added and stirred occasionally until dissolved. This took around 10-15 minutes. The citric acid (15g), was then added to the syrup and stirred well.
The thick, sweetened syrup was then funneled into clean jars and sealed and then sterilized in the Fowlers Vacola.
I've found having the fowlers outside on a bench is fantastic for not heating up the kitchen and also not clogging up space in the kitchen.
I ended up with 1.5 litres of good, old fashioned orange squash concentrate.
To use, simply add a small amount of the syrup to an empty glass and top up with either sparkling water (home fizzed!) or still water.
Add ice cubes if it's unbearably hot and you're parched beyond belief. Or add them even if you're not!
The bottles of squash concentrate should last for 12(+) months in the pantry after the sterilising process. Once opened, store the bottles in the fridge - they won't last long!
Next up on my beverage agenda has got to be Lemon Squash...!
(soda stream info)
(soda stream info)