Ah yes, the classic Cheeky Vimto. One of my enduring memories as a teenager was when I was 17 (you never needed ID back then) in a place called ‘Vogue’ in Oldham. I’d just bought a PINT of Cheeky Vimto for £5 and was feeling smug, until my sister barged past me and spilt it all over the floor and my new Ben Sherman shirt. I’ve never forgiven her.
1. Actually featuring NO real Vimto at all, the Cheeky Vimto is instead a wicked combination of 60ml Port and 1 bottle Blue WKD.
2. If you want to make it even more “Cheeky”, order yourself a Nandos and add 1 shot of vodka to the mix too!
A big favourite down at The Refuge, and a now entirely necessary addition to their outstanding Roast Dinners, Vimto-braised Cabbage brings a welcome sweetness to your plate – and works alongside pretty much everything else on the plate. It’s really rather easy to make too – and takes cabbage – traditionally a proper smelly, boring vegetable – right into the 21st Century. Show this to your Nan – it’ll change her world…
How to make… Vimto Braised Cabbage
— 1 red cabbage
— 1 large onion
— 50ml sugar free Vimto
1.Remove the core and thinly slice up the cabbage and onion. Add a healthy glug of Vimto and transfer it all to a casserole dish.
2. Cover and cook in the oven for around 2 hours on 150°C. When it’s done, add some balsamic, salt and pepper to taste. Done.
Vimto Sticky Pork Ribs
This one is taken from the excellent Vimto Cookbook, and is a unique take on the classic Chinese Sticky Pork Ribs that you always find yourself tucking into at 3am in the morning in Chinatown. You can buy the cookbook here if you fancy trying out loads more recipes using everyone’s favourite Mancunian cordial.
How to make… Vimto Sticky Pork Ribs
— 2kg pork spare ribs
— 1 heaped tablespoon barbeque spice mix
— 200g tomato ketchup
— 1 teaspoon chili powder
— 2 tablespoons soy sauce
— 2 tablespoons teriyaki sauce
— 100g runny honey
— 2 tablespoons Vimto
— 4 tablespoons dry sherry
1. Heat the oven to 160 C
2. Put the pork ribs into a large dish and sprinkle with barbeque spice mix over them. Rub the mix into the ribs with your hands. Lay the ribs out on a rack over a roasting tin, cover with foil and pop into the oven for 1 hour.
3. Put all the other ingredients into a heavy-based saucepan over a medium hear, mix well and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat.
4. Take the ribs from the oven, discard the foil and slather the sticky mixture all over them, turning to coat them on all sides.
5. Pop back into the oven for 10 minutes, then remove, baste with the stick glaze and cook for a further 20 minutes.
6. Remove from oven and serve.
Another classy cocktail that will not only get you merry, but it’ll also keep you refreshed during those long, hot summer days that were sure to experience once again this year. These Vimto Slushies hit social media like a battering ram last year, because not only are they delicious, but you can also make them using stuff you’ll find in even the smallest local Off Licence.
1. Basically, take some vodka, WKD Dark Fruits and Cherryade. That’s it. Mix it all together, crush some ice, add some Haribo sweets on the top and enjoy. Simple, yet very effective.
Vimto Onion Chutney
There are approximately 4 times a year when I pull out the Cheese Board. Once at Christmas, once at New Year, one at Easter and finally – my birthday. Well, Easter is quickly approaching – so why not give this Vimto Onion Chutney a try – it’s perfect paired with a super-strong sharp Cheddar or something a bit Blue…
How to make… Vimto Onion Chutney
— 4 red onions
— 1 large knob of butter
— 3 tbsp of Vimto
— 2 tbsp Red Wine Vinegar
— 1 dash of oil
— Salt & Pepper
1. Peel and finely slice the onions into half-moon shapes. Add the butter and oil to a pan and gently sweat the onions until they are very soft and tender.
2. Increase the heat slightly and stir in the salt and pepper, followed by the Vimto. Continue to cook but don’t let the Vimto burn. Once it’s started to thicken – add the vinegar.
3. Leave to simmer, stirring every now and then, until the onion relish is sticky and reduced. Eat immediately or spoon into sterilised jars and store in a cool place
Vimto Summer Pudding
Summer Pudding – had me a blast. Bit of Grease for you there. What’s a Summer Pudding I hear you ask? Well, it’s a mixture of berries, Vimto and bread – kind of like a Bread & Butter Pudding but different. Okay it’s nothing like that but I’m finding it hard to explain. It’s very delicious though and perfect for, well – for Summer…
How to make… Vimto Summer Pudding
— 400g mixed berries, fresh or defrosted
— 1 tbsp caster sugar
— 200ml Vimto cordial
— 5 medium slices of white bread, crusts removed
1. Put the berries into a dish and add the sugar and Vimto cordial. Set aside to steep for half an hour. Drain the fruit and put the juices into a shallow dish.
2. Reserving one slice for the top, dip the slices of bread into the juices, one at a time, and mould them all round the base and inside of the pudding bowl, filling in any gaps.
3. Fill the centre with the fruit, then cut a circle from the other piece of bread, dipped in the juices, to fit the top of the bowl – it should reach right to the edge. If you run out of juice for dipping, don’t worry – it will seep from the fruit later. Cover with clingfilm and chill.
4. After two hours, remove the clingfilm and turn the pudding over on to a rimmed plate (the rim will catch any excess juice), leaving the bowl on top until you want to serve it. This will make sure the base is full of juice and the pudding keeps its shape.
5. Remove the bowl and serve at room temperature cut in wedges, with a good dollop of clotted cream.
You can make wine out of pretty much anything, including nettles, elderflowers, honey and now – Vimto! I found this recipe online on how to do it – a word of warning though – it’ll take a few weeks to be ready – so don’t go thinking you can make it on a Friday afternoon ready for your night out.
How to make… Vimto Wine
— Boil 1L of Vimto to remove any preservatives, remove any scum that forms.
— Add 500g white table sugar to the Vimto and allow the mix to cool down.
— Add to a demijohn (one of those glass wine-making bottles) and top up with approximately 3.5 litres of filtered water. Add 1 tsp of High Alcohol Wine Yeast.
— Allow to ferment and then rack out into another demijohn and wait for it to clear after a few weeks. Bottle up and enjoy.