Squish your blackcurrants into a fruity cordial or top with champagne for the perfect kir royale.
This is a recipe to cut out and stick on the fridge for when the first blackcurrants emerge. Between now and then you can ask around to find someone who will stock them.
This should be much easier than it is. We have been cultivating these sharp little vitamin C bombs in this country since the 17th century. Blackcurrants are the only fruit that grow well in our miserable climate and provide abundant quantities of the scurvy-stopping vitamin.
During the second world war - when other sources of vitamin C were scarce - almost the entire crop was sequestered by the government, turned into cordial and delivered free to Britain's children.
British blackcurrant growers now grow 5,000 acres of blackcurrants. That is 4,000 football pitches-worth, according to the Blackcurrant Foundation. Let's just call it an area the size of Wales - it usually is.
These fields produce up to 30,000 tonnes of blackcurrants. That's enough to fill about a million baths. Or 40,000 minis, once you have taken the elephants out. Anyway, it is a lot.
But 95% of that crop goes towards making a certain well-known blackcurrant cordial, which is one reason you don't often find fresh blackcurrants for sale in the shops. Some pick-your-own farms sell them, and it's worth the trip. Failing that, you can often buy frozen ones at the supermarket.
This recipe - a firm favourite on the Leon menu for years - has a fresher taste than most blackcurrant cordials.
Drink it diluted or add a little bit to a tall glass of fizz (champagne, prosecco or cava) to create the perfect kir royale.
Make your own blackcurrant cordial
½ tsp citric acid
1 In a heavy-based pan, simmer the sugar, blackcurrants and water gently for 5 minutes.
2 Using a potato masher, break up the fruit to release as much juice as possible.
3 Add the citric acid and simmer for another 2 minutes.
4 Strain the mix through muslin and pour the extracted liquid into a sterilised bottle and keep in the fridge.
Recipe by Jane Baxter and Henry Dimbleby, co-founder of the healthy fast-food restaurant chain Leon (@henry_leon)
If you can find them - squish them. Photograph: Yuki Sugiura for the Guardian