of Elderflower Cordial, or living off the land
You’ve just licked the last gummy bit of rhubarb-anise syrup from the lip of your glass and now you need a new delicious drink DIY?
Elderflower cordial, come on down!
It’s a simple but very gentile beverage, the sort of thing I imagine Lord and Lady Grantham sipping at a lawn party at Downton Abbey. It has a sweet floral flavour, though not as cloying or perfumy as rosewater. But the best thing about making this delicate drink yourself is the hunter/gatherer high you experience by biking into the forest to find elderflowers. It’s great fun.
Here’s a peek at the elderflower cordial that’s been brewing in my cauldron for the last few days.
fills 3 wine bottle-sized flasks
1 kg/2.2 lbs sugar
2.5 liters/5 pints water
50 g /1.7 oz. citric acid
2 lemons, zested and roughly sliced
30 elderflower clusters
Go out into the world and find some elderflowers, picking only the clusters in full, fragrant bloom. Separate the flowers from the stalks and give them a quick rinse to get rid of any bugs.
In a large pot, bring the water and sugar to a boil, then turn off the heat.
Once the mixture is cool, swirl in the citric acid, lemon zest and lemon slices, and elderflowers.
Cover the pot and let it steep undisturbed for 3 to 4 days. Aside from adding a lovely tang, the citric acid will prevent it from fermenting.
Strain the mixture and bottle up the sunny cordial that results! Keep refrigerated.
Try diluting 1 part cordial with 4 parts water – still or sparkling. A slug of gin and a sprig of mint would also be perfect companions.
I love it, and I love your process pictures! We have been thinking of elderflower wine… But we must act fast! If we stall, however, there is always elderberry wine… I will definitely be adding this to my Sunday Sharing posts at the end of the week!
Oh, also– your cordial bottle is amazing.
Ooh, please try the wine — I’ll be enjoying it vicariously through you. (:
boy boy boy oh boy. the bottle rocks my socks. did you get it specially for the cordial? looks like something Mr Darcy would own. On a different note, somehow one of the neighbourhood cats managed to weasle its way into Ben’s heart on saturday while i was at work. He now leaves the the cat flap unlocked as i discovered this morning as i almost tripped over a purring machine in my half blind half awake state. I don’t see what the cat sees in us – we haven’t fed it, we think it may have lived here with the previous renters, cos it seems so darn at home despite us not feeding it! Yet its sitting on my feet currently. quite nice.
Gezellig, hoor! You may be a cat lady after all. ;)
And the bottle was a very special gift from a classy houseguest, once upon a time.
Hm, well I’ve always been a fan of St. Germaine liquor, I may have to give this a try (gin definitely included)! Btw, I just stumbled upon your blog today and have to say I am loving it! Brava lady! I love your genuine writing style, your recipes, adventure, and (of course) Downton Abby references. I am following you on bloglovin’ =)
I feel so sad that I spent close to a year in France without ever tasting St-Germain!! Thanks for putting it on my to-taste list for the next time I pop down. (:
Great posta and photos. Love your blog…look forward to reading more..
I’m so glad you’re following along! (: