Wednesday, 30 June 2010

An Elderflower start to the Summer!!

Living in Hackney Wick means we get to experience the natural habitats around us as though we were living in rural England!

Now that summer is truly upon us, it’s the perfect time to go out and enjoy the river lee, marshes, woods, trees and orchards.

One thing we have been enjoying a lot of recently is homemade elderflower cordial.

It’s the easiest thing to make – flowerheads, lemons, sugar and water. Combine these ingredients together for
a refreshing and delicious summer concoction.

This year we have managed to produce 4 batches since the flowers started blossoming at the end of May!

Sadly, I fear we have picked our last flowers as the trees are now starting to form their berries …elderberry jam anyone?

The creamy white flowers of the elderflower tree (sambucus nigra)

A beautiful summer's evening along the the towpath...


and a perfect evening for picking flowers for one last batch of cordial.


That should be enough flowers for the pot.


A delicious, fragant taste of early summer best served with chilled sparkling water!

11 comments:

Anna said...

Thanks Nadira! It was scrummy!
Anna

Owen said...

Lucky you, summer delights. The council contractor chopped down our elder and poisoned the stump. The wood pigeons are looking very annoyed, they love the cheap thrill they get from overbalancing as they try and eat all the berries from one head.

Matt said...

Mmmmmm it is delish!
Matt

Tony said...

Thank you Nadira. Is is so refreshing and summery. Absolutely delicious! Why don't you make shedloads and sell it?
Tony

Anonymous said...

It was so refreshing! Very nice thank you. Please don't forget the recipe.
M

Paul said...

I just saw you guys on TV about the noise again! (http://www.itv.com/london/?intcmp=NAV_LONDONTO0_LOCALNEW1) Why didn't you give me a shout? I would've given them a what4 as well. Still - well done - keep it up. Don't let the ODA give us any more rubbish!!
Paul

Owen said...

Thanks for the link, Paul. The item brought back all the memories of Docklands development. In summmer you need the windows open, and they punish you extra. The rubbish little notice from Hackney was worded almost identically to the "only when absolutely necessary" nonsense we were fobbed off with as well. We were sold down the river by Tower Hamlets Environmental Health. But don't give up complaining to Hackney EH - at the very least you're reminding them they or their bosses have stitched you up as part of their commitment to professional standards.

Zoulla said...

mmmm was yummy :) thanks again

Owen said...

Carter Ruck's other clients Trafigura have just been found guilty in Amsterdam for their criminal toxic waste-dumping activities that Carter Ruck tried to stop being reported in the papers. Devastated the lives of tens of thousands of people in Abidjan but the world wasn't supposed to know.

Lesson - bullies may have power and buy friends to protect them but in the end there's nothing to beat having right on your side.

(No need to publish if it might make things difficult for you with public who don't like people complaining about what they're forced to put up with)

ellearch said...

Hi there,

found this blog through google. could you tell me where you got your elderflower in hackney? I am currently on the look out but because it is ending june, the elderflower buds have turn to gooseberries in the trees around dalston!

Leabank Square said...

Hi eelarch

Oops! Sorry we missed your comment. This year has been a really bad year for us elderflowerers. It was great that summer came so early & hot - but that meant that elderflower blossoms - the main ingredient - had such a short time span this year.

Most of us only managed a few harvest trips before they all went over.

And even then I think the intensity of flavour wasn't as good as other years either.

As all foragers say - there's plenty other.
I hope you still managed to find some somewhere around Hackney Wick.