Cordial and Summer Days

This is another story of community as a bit of bad luck would lead me to. For those getting sick of this subject there is a nice recipe for a orange, lemon and honey cordial and you can bypass the rest of this post  🙂

So we decided to head up country for couple of days and visit my parents. Get out of the city and lets the kids spend a couple of days with their grandparents running around in nature.

Given the luck we have had with anything related to automobiles it was perhaps a given that we would have some trouble and sure enough about an hour from home and an hour from my parents place, we had a blow out that destroyed a tyre on the hired trailer and damaged the wheel arch very badly.

So what does one do on Sunday of a long weekend with a blown tyre and trailer on the side of the highway with an old bath in it for dad’s aqauponics system 65km from home and 65km from the destination?

Well I decided that no one was driving with that trailer any time soon so I made it safe on the verge of the road and headed to my parents home wondering how I was going to sort this all out.

Should have known to relax. Within an of hour of getting to my parents place my father had sourced 2 tyres of different sizes, tools for the removal and tools for the repair for the trailer. All in a town of 400 people on Sunday afternoon of a long weekend…

I probably couldn’t do this in Melbourne a city of 3.5 million and certainly not that fast.

Small towns are like that the neighbour who supplied me with a spare tyre said don’t worry use it for as long as you need it no rush. And we did need it as in the end it was the tyre that fitted. This is not a wealthy man but actually a person on a disability pension. This is what community looks like it is helping out each other knowing that they will be helped if needed. I remember this from when I was a kid and my mother had a bad accident and casseroles just appeared from neighbours to help out das when mum was in hospital for some time.

Animals just got locked up, fed watered all sorted while dad was away with mum. And in return dad has probably helped these people or people who have helped these people. And so the circle goes around and so it does up to and including today.

We have kidded ourselves that we can purchase the services we need. Operating as islands and purchasing being free of the commitments and we can get anything we want, which we probably can at a cost to ourselves but it does not replace that helping hand that we need and it disempowers us. We used to rely on each other and it is not always the people that fit in our click or we fit in who are the ones who help us.

So dad and I collected the trailer replaced the wheel, bashed out the wheel arch (a little knowledge of metals and their craft is a handy thing) and got home to find the kids having a ball with their nana.

The neighbour advised me that I could have the tyre for $20 as he has enough of them. But he will get a couple of six packs of good beer to go with it as well. That level of helpfulness can’t be bought off so cheaply, and is not ever expected but doesn’t need to be as in the end the gift of the beer is just part to of that circle we discussed.

The day finished with a simple meal in the cool evening outside in my parents orchard. Homemade passatta  with lots of beans and fresh veg and small amount of meat and lots of pasta. A couple of beers and great evening had by all.

dinner When we checked out dads triffid like sunflowers in his garden I noticed bees hard at work in them and was reminded I needed to post a recipe that I was going to post last night till the homebrew got to me.

is that a triffid dad

sunflower with bees

So below is a very tasty and refreshing little cordial that takes a few minutes to make and works really well in the hot humid conditions we have at the moment.

Brew a batch and sit in the garden with family and friends and just enjoy life and remember that you are not an island and can’t be if you really want to be part of society.

Orange, Honey and Lemon Cordial

  • 3 cups of freshly squeezed orange juice (or frozen home squeezed juice works as well)
  • 2 cups of freshly squeezed lemon juice(or frozen home squeezed juice works as well)
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 1 cup of honey

Combine it all a stainless steel pot stirring in the honey so it dissolves properly

Bring to a gentle boil then drop the heat and simmer for 5 minutes stirring to make sure the sugar and honey are combined and not sticking to the pot.

Pour into sterilised bottles. Should keep in the bottles for up to a month but better stored in a fridge and if you open the bottles definitely put in a fridge. There is not the usual amount of sugar that preserves most cordial for long periods of time. You could also add some tartaric acid to help with preserving it but in our house hold this does not last long enough for that to be an issue 🙂

Serve with ice and mixed to your preferred strength.



One thought on “Cordial and Summer Days

  1. Oh yummy…. I am definitely making some of this to use up the last of the lemons before the old tree goes to meet it’s maker (i.e. back to the soil as mulch!).

    I have read your posts about really living a community orientated lifestyle with interest and find that I agree with your completely. To me, neighbours tend to spend too much time wrapped up in their own lives these days and pay very little attention to those around them. The exception would be the permies I’ve met recently, who seem to consider community to be of the utmost importance and seek out opportunities to share their knowledge, skills and produce with others.

    I have found that belief becoming stronger in myself of late and have become increasingly frustrated with a local community group I am involved with that seems to be more concerned with politics and gaining interest on their sizable bank account, than actually increasing their community support and involvement.

    Why is it that so many of these little groups become so insular and wrapped up in what they think they should be doing, that they forget that the word ‘community’ even appears in their title?

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