Fans of Anne of Green Gables will love recreating this Raspberry Cordial. This non-alcoholic pink drink is a summery blend of fresh raspberry juice and a hint of lemon. Serve it with dainty cucumber sandwiches and the fanciest linens you own in the company of kindred spirits. It’s the way Anne would want it to be.
Oh, Anne Shirley: the adventurous red-headed dreamer with a heart of gold and a penchant for trouble. She’s as much a part of my childhood as Barbie dolls and slumber parties.
If you’re unfamiliar with Anne of Green Gables, first of all, WHAT ARE YOU DOING WITH YOUR LIFE? and second of all, you should still make Raspberry Cordial.
This sweet, refreshing drink really hits the spot on a hot summer day. The kids and I both loved it. In fact, when my oldest spotted me editing the photos, he said, “Please, can we have that pink drink again, Mommy?”
Anne Shirley’s Infamous Raspberry Cordial Mishap
Before we dive in to the recipe, a little backstory: One of the iconic moments in Anne of Green Gables involves a much-anticipated tea party between a pre-teen Anne and her best friend Diana. Anne is positively beside herself with glee when her adoptive mother, Marilla, agrees to let Diana come to Green Gables for an unsupervised afternoon tea.
She carefully picks out the tea set, the cherry preserves, and the fruit cake and cookies. Best of all, Marilla gives her permission to serve her famous homemade Raspberry Cordial.
When Diana arrives, Anne goes out of her way to make her guest feel at home, starting with a goblet and the bottle of cordial. While Anne jabbers on in the kitchen, Diana manages to down two full glasses.
“That’s awfully nice raspberry cordial, Anne,” she said. “I didn’t know raspberry cordial was so nice.”
Ever the generous host, Anne offers her a third glassful. By this time, Diana’s beginning to feel ill, and she leaves in an unsteady haste, hiccuping and tripping all the way home.
Of course, the reader knows Diana is drunk as a skunk, but poor Anne doesn’t realize her folly until several days later, when she and Marilla discover it wasn’t raspberry cordial she served her friend, but Marilla’s famous currant wine.
What is Raspberry Cordial?
Of course, this story begs the question: what is the drink Diana was supposed to get that day?
While most cordials are alcoholic, the Raspberry Cordial of Prince Edward Island was a child friendly drink combining fresh raspberries, sugar, and a hint of lemon juice.
It is sweet, a tad tangy, and absolutely bursting with berry flavor–like a grown up, natural Kool-Aid.
Raspberry Syrup for Cordial
Raspberry cordial starts with a raspberry simple syrup.
- To make the syrup, combine the following in a sauce pan:
- 6 4 ounce packages of fresh raspberries or 2 340 gram frozen packages of berries
- 1 ¼ cup sugar
- Cook the mixture over medium low heat, stirring occasionally, until sugar is dissolved and berries start to break down, about 6-7 minutes. Cook an additional few minutes, using a berry smasher to break up the remaining whole berries.
- Pour the berries and juices through a fine mesh sieve into a large bowl. Use the berry smasher to press all the remaining juices out of the berries. From here, you can discard the berries or eat them with a spoon. It tastes like jam!
- At this point, you’ll have a rich, sweet, concentrated raspberry syrup. The concentrate can be stored in the refrigerator for several weeks and diluted as needed, or you can dilute all of it right away and store it in a large pitcher.
How to Make Raspberry Cordial
Add ½ cup of lemon juice and 6 cups of water to the simple syrup and stir well.
To mix individual glasses, add about ¼ cup of syrup to 1 cup of water and a squeeze of lemon juice.
How to Use Raspberry Syrup:
Want to take things in a different direction?
You can also use the raspberry syrup in lattes, cocktails, and sodas like these:
Can you make raspberry cordial ahead of time?
Yes! The syrup can be made up to two weeks ahead of time and stored in the fridge in an airtight container. Just add water and lemon juice before serving!
You can also add the water and lemon juice right away and store the prepared cordial in the fridge for up to 3 days.
What to Serve with Raspberry Cordial
If you’d like to serve a tea just like Anne of Green Gables, pair your raspberry cordial with orange buttermilk biscuits and homemade cherry preserves, a fruit cake like peach bundt cake, apple crumb cake, or rhubarb upside down cake, and some pretty butter or shortbread cookies like canestrelli or lemon rosemary butter cookies.
- 2 (340 gram) bags frozen raspberries (or 4 6 oz. packages of fresh raspberries)
- 1 1/4 cup sugar
- ½ cup lemon juice (juice of 2 lemons)
- 6 cups water
- In a medium sized sauce pan, combine raspberries and sugar. Cook over medium low heat until raspberries have broken down and sugar is dissolved, stirring occasionally. Use a berry masher or two forks to mash berries completely.
- In another small bowl, squeeze out the juice of two lemons.
- Meanwhile, boil 6 cups of water.
- Set a strainer over a large bowl. Pour the raspberry mixture through the strainer, pressing on it with a spoon to get all the juices out. Discard what's left in the strainer or eat it with a spoon like I did because it's SO GOOD.
- Pour the lemon juice and boiling water into the raspberry mixture and stir to combine. Chill for several hours before serving. Serve with lemon wedges.
- I imagine this would be fantastic with a little champagne or sparkling white wine mixed in. Or if you really need something strong, vodka. 🙂
If you prefer, you can stop at step 4 and store the concentrated raspberry simple syrup in the fridge for up to two weeks. Dilute it when ready to serve or add to cocktails, lattes, and other beverages.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 140Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 11mgCarbohydrates: 36gFiber: 2gSugar: 33gProtein: 0g
Please note nutritional information for my recipes is calculated by a third party service and provided as a courtesy to my readers. For the most accurate calculation, I always recommend running the numbers yourself with the specific products you use.