drinkAlison Lambert

ELDERFLOWER CORDIAL

drinkAlison Lambert




Not only is it a fun outing collecting these pretty little bouquets of flowers, it is so easy to make. The syrup is lemony sharp, yet aromatic - it makes one of the most refreshing drinks I no!


It will keep for several weeks in the fridge, but if you wish to keep it longer you will need to add the acid and serilise the bottles, to make sure no bacteria or yeasts that could cause fermentation. This version should keep for a year.



ELDERFLOWER CORDIAL

20-30 freshly picked heads of elderflower
Zest of 2 lemons and 1 orange
Up to 1.5 kg granulated sugar
Up to 200ml freshly squeezed lemon juice (3-5 lemons, depending on size)
Tartaric acid (optional)

Shake any insects of the elderflowers, then place them in a large bowl with the lemon and orange zest and pour over enough water just boiled water to cover the flowers completely (1 ½ -2 ). Cover and leave for at least 4 hours, or overnight, until cold.

Strain the liquid through muslin, a clean cotton cloth or a jelly bag, gently squeezing it to extract all the juice. Measure the amount of liquid and pour it into a saucepan. To every 500ml liquid, add 350g sugar, 50ml lemon juice and a heaped teaspoon tartaric acid if you are using it. Heat gently to dissolve the sugar, stirring occasionally. Bring to a gentle simmer and skim off any skum. Let the cordial cool, then strain once again through muslin.

Pour the cordial through a funnel into clean bottles, filling them to within about 2-3 cm of the top. Seal the bottles with screw tops or corks.

To serve, dilute to taste with ice-cold water at least 5-1 water to cordial.