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Ginger Syrup

Spoon a little of this syrup over a coffee-flavoured cake to use it as the base for a luscious gateau. Whip a little with cream, brandy to taste and orange juice to make an unusual syllabub or sprinkle a little ginger syrup and rum over the sponge cake base of a trifle.

ingredients

1 lemon
150 g (5 oz) fresh ginger root
3 1/2 cups (800 g) 1 3/4 lb lump sugar, crushed

method

1. Use a potato peeler to pare the lemon rind thinly.

2. Squeeze out and strain the lemon juice.

3. Bruise the ginger root by placing it between two pieces of greaseproof paper and hitting it firmly with a rolling pin or steak mallet.

4. Put the ginger into a heatproof bowl and add 1 litre (1 3/4 pint)s water.

5. Stand the bowl over a saucepan of boiling water.

6. Add the lemon rind, juice and sugar to the water and ginger. Simmer for 30 minutes.

7. Skim the syrup, then strain it through a fine sieve. Leave to cool completely.

8. When cold pour the syrup into clean, dry bottles, leaving a 2 cm (3/4 inch) headspace.

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