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Elderflower Cordial

Nothing is quite as enticing as a long cool glass of home-made Elderflower Cordial so easy to make but so delicious to drink. At home you can make a cordial that compares very favourably with commercially produced brands for a fraction of the price. Pick your elderflowers on a warm sunny day choosing only the most fragrant creamy-white heads (old yellowed flower heads can have a nasty smell of tomcat!).

Ingredients

  • 4kgs / 8½ lbs sugar
  • 6 lemons – squeeze the juice and reserve the skins
  • 6pints boiling water
  • 60 large elderflower heads (with as little stalk as possible)
  • 170grms / 6oz Citric Acid

Method

  1. Put the sugar and citric acid into a stainless steel bucket or 27.5 litre Bucket.
  2. Boil the water and pour onto the ingredients stirring well with a wooden spoon. Add the squeezed lemon juice, the skins and the elderflower heads and stir again.
  3. Cover the container and allow the mixture to infuse for 5 days, stirring it every day. Keep the container covered to prevent contaminants or fruit flies getting in.
  4. Strain the liquor through muslin.
  5. For long term storage use clean glass bottles with screw cap lids. Fill the bottles to within 1ins /3cms of the brim. Pasteurise the loosely capped bottles using the Stainless Steel Pasteuriser, holding the cordial at 70ºC for 20 minutes. Tighten the lids then invert the bottles to pasteurise the caps; the cordial will then keep indefinitely until opened. Once opened, store the cordial in a fridge. It is delicious served with sparkling water and ice.

This fragrant cordial can also be used to make elderflower sorbet, to complement the flavour of gooseberries in jam and in fruit fool or to make a refreshing cider spritzer – a great hit with those who like their cider a little sweetened.

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