Cordial is a syrup-y drink you can dilute with water , fizzy wine or - even better- champagne - and elderflower cordial is one of the best - plus super easy and gorgeously fabuloso to make yourself!
The elder tree thrives practically everywhere and completely boring to look at during most of the year-apart from early summer.
It then covers itself completely with big heads of delicate lacey flowers that have a lovely and tangy scent.
20 fresh flowerheads of the eldertree ( as above- you will find elder trees in blossom right now ).
3 sliced lemons
1.2 kg sugar
1.8 litres of boiling water
50 g citric acid.
Note : This last one ( citric acid ) is very hard to get-and is used as a preservative for your cordial - I tried quite a few chemists and had no luck .Citric acid also exists in citrus fruits ( and in fizzy vitamin C tablets )- so in the end I opted for 4 fizzy vitamin C tablets !! A very healthy drink !!It works the same way.
You will also need :
Three or four sterilised glass bottles with screw-tops .( You sterilise them by putting them in the dishwasher and to let it run, or wash them and then dry them in a 150 degrees Centigrade hot oven ).
How to make the cordial :
Pick your elderflowers and put them on a big dish .
Shake the flowerheads over the sink so that eventual small insects that are on the flowers, fall off.
Take all the stalks off the flowerheads so you have a bowl full of flowers.
Slice your lemons, then take a big pan, and put the lemon slices and the flowers in the bottom and add the cooled down sugarwater .Add the citric acid- in my case 4 tablets of fizzy vitamin C tablets which have citric acid ( this does really work ! ).
To pour the cordial in your bottles without spilling, I can recommend dipping a milk-jug in the big bowl of elderflower cordial and then pour the cordial in there in the bottle. Paste or glue your labels on , put your surplus cordial bottles in the fridge and crack open your first self made elderflower cordial .
Serve with ice-cubes , fizzy water ( dilute to taste ) and a sprig of mint if you have it handy.
Enjoy your own elderflower cordial!
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