The early June hedgerows are frothing with a bumper crop of elderflowers this year and we at Rare are busy foraging & steeping them.
Our grown-up range of soft drinks and cordials are made from seasonal fruit & natural flavourings, which we preserve in the traditional way in our own kitchens and top of the tree is our fragrant, floral beautifully balanced elderflower range.
Elderflower mint & Temperley’s russet apple fizz, Elderflower, ginger & lemongrass zinger, Elderflower & Lady Grey iced tea & Gooseberry & Elderflower-ade are just some of our creative alternatives to a boozy cocktail.
Don’t get us wrong, there are no puritans here and we love to use Chase Elderflower vodka in summer punches & Champagne cups. The golden elixir in the jewel-like bottle of St Germain “delice de sureau” certainly brings a “Twinkle” to life.
As it’s great for the liver & full of antioxidants, we feel we can slurp our Elderflower mixes in the knowledge that we are not completely going to the dark side.
We also use elderflower as a reviving after-dinner infusion with cut lemon & sliced ginger root in May & June. It’s so much more seasonal than mint tea and a lovely twist for guests. It can also help ward off those brutal Summer colds!
We have been judiciously adding flowers to our Spring salads, flavouring custards, fruit compotes, jams, panna cottas & sorbets.
Try our perfect cordial recipe:
25 Large fresh elderflower blossom heads (shaken to get rid of bugs!)
2 kg Granulated sugar
3 Uwaxed lemons, zest pared in strips and sliced
75g Citric acid (available from chemists)
Place the blossom heads in a large, heatproof bowl with the lemon slices. Over a low heat, dissolve the sugar in 1.1 litres cold water in a large saucepan until the liquid is completely clear. Increasing the heat, bring this syrup to the boil, then stir in the citric acid and the lemon zest and pour over the elderflower blossoms and lemon slices. Cover with clingfilm and set aside in a cool place to steep for about 24 hours.
After this steeping period, strain into a jug through a muslin-lined sieve, and divide between jars. Seal tightly and keep in a cool, dark place. These delicious jars of elderflower goodness will be cordially yours to use within 2 months.
As well as looking pretty as a picture, the versatility of the elderflower and the berries that follow is boundless. Elderflower certainly has us feeling extremely cordial.
We can develop a bespoke soft drink for your event or a fragrant summer cocktail or dish for your reception or party. Get in touch to give us your brief.