Tuesday, 3 July 2012

Kiki´s Elderflower Syrup

Today I woke up very early 
From my window I can see 
That Kiki has climbed the elder bush 
Behind grandfather´s cottage
I can´t bear to take a closer look
I am very much afraid of height
It makes me feel giddy
But Kiki doesn´t seem to mind at all

 A perfect day, says Kiki
 To make elderflower syrup
And down she jumps
With her heavy basket
Three minutes later I run across the meadow 
(Still in my pyjamas)
But Kiki has already pressed a lemon
And grated a spoon full of lemon zest
The day has just started
And I could already eat a horse, says Kiki
You better not, is what I say
But what about a cheese sandwich for breakfast?
(I know that picking lots of
Elderflowers is hard work
Even for someone like
Kiki in the Meadow)
When I come back
With a cheese sandwich 
And an apple, Kiki says
No thanks, I am no longer hungry
A perfect morning
To start with three spoonfuls 
Of sugar for breakfast.
And then she screws the lid on a bottle

(I ate the sandwich myself)
How to make Elderflower Syrup (without eating three spoonfuls of sugar)

You will need:
ca. 25 rinsed elderflower heads, stems removed
1.5 liter water
three organic lemons, rinsed
2kg sugar
60g citric acid
clean bottles with screw caps

Mix water and sugar in a pot and bring to a gentle boil until the sugar is dissolved. Leave to cool down a bit. Grate lemon zest and press juice. Add zest, juice and citric acid to the syrup. 
Use a large pot or bowl for the elderflower heads and pour over the warm syrup. Cover the pot with a lid (or use a cloth for the bowl) and let stand at room temperature for three days.

Strain the syrup through a sieve lined with muslin and bring to a gentle boil for about five minutes. 
Pour into throroughly sterilised glass bottle and screw on the caps, let cool down. Store bottles in a cool and dark place.

With this recipe, we have elderflower juice ready to use throughout the year. You can use less sugar if you want to use the syrup very soon, please note that this will diminish shelf life.

Enjoy the day!

Juliane

P.S. Kiki lives in Sweden, not in the South of France, our elder bushes are in full bloom first at this time of the year. If the elderflowers withered at the bushes in your neighbourhood, save the recipe for next year ;-)