May 30, 2011

elderflower cordial

Last week, Mum and I made elderflower cordial, using a recipe from the River Cottage preserves book. Elderflowers appear in the hedgerows at the beginning of Summer, and we picked plenty! This is the first time I've made cordial and it was very easy, and it's really satisfying having the bottles lined up in the kitchen ready for summer drinks! Perfect (I'm told) added to champagne, or diluted to make elderflower ice lollies.

Makes about 2 litres:
25 elderflower heads
finely grated zest 3 unwaxed lemons + 1 orange, plus their juice
1kg sugar (yikes)!
1 heaped tsp citric acid

Shake the elderflower heads to remove insects and wash gently. Put in a large bowl together with the zest. Add 1.5 litres boling water, cover and leave overnight.

Strain the liquid through a muslin cloth and pour into a saucepan. Add the juice and citric acid and heat gently to dissolve the sugar. Bring to a simmer and cook for a couple of minutes.

Use a funnel to pour the hot syrup into sterilised bottles.

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