Mary Sheehan Coming Home To Cook

July 1, 2009

Elderflower Cordial

Filed under: home base,Recipes — admin @ 7:59 am

elderflower-008I’ve been wanting to make this delicious, natural drink since I tasted it a few years ago. It was light and sweet with a subtle aroma unlike anything I had ever had. You can buy the commercial, bottled concoction in most health shops or farm shops here. I find them excessively syrupy and sweet, even though you dilute them with spirits or sparkling water.  So, after exploring recipes and walking the hedgerows around Clare I decided to pick my own and make it from “scratch”.  So, Adva and I set out on a gloriously hot day, clippers and bags in hand to find the Elderflower trees. They are in full bloom, and the best for picking from mid June through the 1st week in July. Since it has been so sunny and hot here we found that they were already dropping their flowers in preparation for the berries soon to follow. But, we managed to find some around the back roads of Doolin and after getting stung by nettles, thorny rose bushes, bothered by midges, stretching over slippery rocks and streams, avoiding the protective sheep dogs and identifying and tasting many other edible plants along the way (more on them this summer, for sure!) we had a big bag of at least 60 heads.

I combined a few recipes, from friends and cookery book and came up with Elderflower Lemonade. Here’s the recipe which is gluten and dairy free.

Pick 60 heads of elderflowers, Do not wash – it will release the aroma – just put in a heavy pot and cover with water. Put on a low simmer for 1 hour.  Add 3 cups of granulated sugar, 2 lemons (I squeezed juice into the pot and then put the whole fruit in to steep), 100 grams of citrc acid (purchase in a chemists) Simmer for another 30 minutes, then take off heat and let steep for another hour. Sieve through a coffee filter (thanks, Karin!)  muslin or  fine mesh strainer.  This made 15 cups of cordial.  I call this lemonade because the lemons I added really make it a lip smacker! But, it’s not too sweet which is what I was going for.  I poured about a Tbl. in a 2 cup glass and added sparkling water. Refreshing and light and more freeemma-027 food!

Powered by WordPress