Kunda’s Lime Cordial

Lime Cordial

The Times today has asked us to prepare for a heatwave this bank holiday weekend where the weather is supposed to be a balmy 20 degrees.

“More like a cold wave in some parts of India”, my mother archly pointed out as she pulled on her woolen socks and wrapped her shawl tightly around her shoulders.

Anyway she has been busy making her lime cordial – not so much preparing for the “warm” weekend ahead as replenishing the son’s training fluid.

And where to begin with the training fluid? We have tried and eliminated all kinds of supermarkets squash owing to horrible additives, we have gone organic, we have bought orange juice in bulk from Costco, we have even shuddered and suggested diluted Ribena. And nothing works!

Except for Kunda’s lime cordial – her take on India’s famous “nimbu paani” – lime and water. The son first had it in India has now fallen for it hook, line and sinker (always wanted to use that phrase somewhere). Here is the recipe.

Kunda’s Lime Cordial

Serves 20
Prep time 15 minutes
Cook time 40 minutes
Total time 55 minutes
A cool and refreshing homemade lime cordial


  • 1/2 pint lime juice (this is approximately the juice of 10 small limes)
  • 2.5 pints sugar (unrefined please)
  • 1.75 pints water
  • A very small pinch of salt


Boiling the syrup a second time is very crucial to the process.


Step 1
I used a lime squeezer to squeeze 10 small limes. This squeezer that I bought from Waitrose did the job in about 10 minutes.
Step 2
Mix the water, a pinch of salt and sugar in a saucepan and bring to boil. When the sugar melts, keep boiling the mixture until it becomes sticky and stringy.
Step 3
Now add the lime juice, stir and bring to boil. Again, boil the mixture until it becomes sticky and stringy.
Step 4
Keep syrup aside to cool. When it is completely cool (probably in about 7 hours or even the next day), bring to boil until it is sticky and stringy.
Step 5
Cool and decant into bottles when completely cool. The cordial does not have to refrigerated. Obviously, serve mixed with water and add a little dash of pepper to spice it up!