Saturday, June 16, 2012

Elderflower Cordial for our English Summer

At the back of our small London garden a huge elderflower shrub leans over. At this time of year a mist of white pollen drifts across, mixed with the constant drizzle of rain. Armed with a ladder, a rain coat, a pair of scissors and a large metal bowl, I climbed up onto the back wall and clipped off 20 elderflower blooms to make cordial. I blame the Diamond Jubilee. Encouraged by the union jack bunting livening up our neighbours' homes, people seemed chattier. The end of the road was cordoned off for a street party, with a regal dog show and best tiara competition. And I bottled my Diamond Jubilee Cordial and gave it to my neighbours.

Have any of you any favourite recipes that use elderflowers? We would love to know about them...

Elderflower Cordial

25 elderflower heads
2 pints of boiling water (1.2 litres)
2 kg or 4.5 1b of caster sugar
2 unwaxed lemons
2 unwaxed limes 
1 tsp citric acid 

1. Carefully wash the elderflower heads to get rid of any little insects
2. Boil the water and pour it over the caster sugar in a very big pan or mixing bowl. Stir and leave to cool
3. Add the teaspoon of citric acid, the limes and lemons finely sliced.
4. Add the flowers, stir gently and leave to cool covered.
5. Leave for at least a day. (We left it for three days and the scent and taste of the flowers is stronger)
6. Strain through a muslin cloth or a fine sterile tea towel and pour into sterilised bottles. 

1 comment:

  1. Ursula L1:23 AM

    Yay! You're back!

    You can make fritters of elder flowers, and other edible flowers. You want a very light batter. A fairly thin mixture of flour, egg yolk and water or milk, with beaten egg whites folded in. (Google for exact recipies.) The flowers are dipped in the batter and deep-fried. Served dusted with powdered sugar or a sweet sauce.


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