Having run out of home-made gifts, I have been thinking about making some Elderflower Cordial. Elderflowers are everywhere at the moment. If you are picking wild elderflowers, remember not to strip whole trees, because they wont be able to spread next year and also you will leave insects and birds without much or any food. Also collect them in a paper bag so as they can breathe.
From the “Heilkräuter” (healing herbs) website (which also has directions on how to make tinctures).
1. Elderflower Jelly:
- 12 large elderflower “clusters”, (or more smaller ones)
- 750 ml applejuice (clear or cloudy)
- 500g – 1kg Jam-making sugar
- Rub the flowers thoroughly to “dislodge” the blossoms, or you can take a pair of scissors to them – Just try not to clip the green stems as they will also go into the jelly too.
- The blossoms are then left in the apple juice overnight along with the jam-making sugar. Add more or less depending on how sweet you would like to have it.
2. Elderflower Cava:
- 350g sugar
- Juice of half a lemon
- approx 20 elderflower “clusters”
- 3 and a half Litres of boiled, cooled water
- Put everything into a large jar and then last of all pour the water in. Stir to dissolve the sugar.
- Cover with a clean teatowel or cheesecloth. Leave to stand in a sunny window for a few days.
- After 2-3 days some bubbles will rise up, and that’s how you know it’s done.
- Experienced elderflower-cava producers can prepare it fresh and store it for 6 weeks in their cellars, but this is not recommended first of all because the bottle can explode and cause a mess.
- It doesnt always work, so taste carefully first of all, and If a slime forms do not drink! You can see a step by step picture-explanation here.
Now I just need to find somewhere to collect the clean blossoms! Not so easy in the city…
3. Elderflower Cordial / Syrup (translated from Chefkoch.de)
- 1 Litre Water
- The juice of 3 lemons
- 500g sugar
- 20 “clusters” of elderflowers
Makes 4 quarter-litre bottles worth