Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Foraged Food: Elderflower Cordial


Rachel, Dublin

I've had a thought at the back of my head all spring to go foraging for elderflower this year but I'd never really got around to planning where I might need to go to do this.  Visions of me rambling off up the side of the Dublin Mountains had put me off.  I'm not the mountain rambling type and I was fairly certain mountain rescue would not be impressed at having to save me and my elderflower. 

Suffice to say, I was excited (and somewhat relieved) when it finally dawned on me last week that the pretty white flowers I'd been admiring in the hedge of our apartment building's carpark were actually elderflower!  That evening, after waiting until there were fewer neighbours around to think I was a loo-la, I crept out on my expedition to the car park and, as I mentioned on Friday, got a little bit carried away at just how much I picked.

Back in the apartment, where the bf was a bit bemused at what I'd been up to, I set to making my cordial.  I followed this recipe on the Slow Food Ireland website which is from the River Cottage cookbook.  It's a very simple process but does take some time across two evenings. 


Based on the quantities in this recipe I ended up with a lot of cordial, about 2.5-3 litres from 25-30 elderflower heads. Rather than adding citric acid as a preservative I have frozen mine in batches and I am trying to think of creative ways of using it other than just as cordial  and in cocktails (not that I have any issue with having to drink lots of cocktails).  I did take some inspiration from Aoife's marinated allotment strawberries on Monday and made a slightly more school-night friendly version by marinating my strawberries in two tablespoons of the cordial which was fab.  Does anyone have any other suggestions of things to do with elderflower cordial other than drink it?

8 comments:

  1. Very good for poaching pears. Actually gin is also good for poaching pears.....

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  2. Oooh, poaching pears sounds lovely, especially as they're one of the things I can't eat raw.

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  3. I'm getting inspired now - elderflower and strawberry sorbet?

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  4. http://britishfood.about.com/od/britishrecipecollections/tp/Elderflower-Recipes.htm
    Elderflower vinegarette looks good!

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  5. Ooh, that sounds lovely, thanks for that link Claire!

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  6. Also, ever since reading the blog, I'm seeing Elderflower EVERYWHERE! going to collect some for my sister this weekend, and use her kitchen to make some cordial (my kitchen is smaller than a broom closet)!!

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  7. Once you've spotted it the first time you see it all over the place! I keep having to tell myself that I don't need anymore but I did spot this recipe for elderflower fizz that I want to try! http://www.hedgerowharvest.org.uk/hedge-recipes/item/156-elderflower-fizz

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