Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Elderflower Cordial

One of the best parts of working at the Apricot Centre is getting to learn new things. I had a lot of fun bottling the elderflower cordial and pasteurizing it. I thought I'd share a recipe and explain the pasteurizing process in case anyone's wanting to grab what's left of the elderflowers and make some of their own. This recipe is slightly different from the one Marina used (which I think was just boiling water, sugar, lemon juice and elderflowers), but I don't have the numbers for that. She made two huge buckets full with 500 flower heads. Here's a recipe I found online.


* 1.5 litres of boiling water
* 1 kilo of white granulated sugar
* 20 large elderflower heads (if they are small, pick more)
* Juice of 4 lemons
* 55g of citric acid

First, pick the flowers. Avoid any bunches with brown flowers. Boil the water and zest and slice the lemons. Combine all the ingredients. Marina lets hers sit for 5 days, making sure to stir each day. (This keeps the sugar from settling at the bottom.)

On day 5, strain and bottle. And Enjoy!

To pasteurize, make sure the bottle cap is on, but not to tight. Marina has a pasteurizing device that looks like a metal trash can. It has a metal stand that fits in the bottom with a central stem coming up. The termometer rests on the stem. A trash can lid with a hole for the termometer fits over the top. The whole contraption fits on the stove over 2 burners. Heat the water to 70 degrees C. Put the bottles in for 20 minutes at that temperature. Monitor the temperature to make sure it stays around 70 and doesn't stray too far in either direction. After 20 minutes, take out the bottles, taking care not to burn yourself. Flip the bottles upside down once, then tighten the cap. And you're done. You can enjoy right away or you can store it for use later. It's good for about a year.

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