Thursday, May 13, 2010

Everything elderflower 1: Elderflower jelly

I love elderflower!
I love it in cakes (just add a fistful of dried flowers to your favourite plain cake batter), I love elderflower cordial during summer with fizzy water, I love it with white wine for a different aperitivo or dessert wine, I love elderflower jelly and elderflower liqueur.

First of all you have to collect the elderflowers, the flowers have to be fully but just about open, make sure that the elder does not grow very near a busy road or any other dirty place because you can't wash the flowers.
Dry the elderflowers: I usually make small bunches of 10-12 flowers that I tie with a string and hang on a clothes-horse (heads down). Make sure that you put some paper or a cloth underneath because they loose some pollen while drying.
Now you have the elderflowers, ready for any of the uses mentioned above.


For the elderflower "juice"
1/2 liter of water + approx 100g
200 gr of sugar
15 flowers
1 lemon

For the jelly
800 gr of elderflower "juice"
800 gr of sugar
1 sachet of pectine
(or use the amount of "juice", sugar and pectine suggested on the package).

Prepare the "juice" by boiling the water with the sugar until the sugar is well dissolved, put the elderflowers and the hot syrup in a bowl (that you can cover), squeeze the lemon and add the juice and the whole "leftover" rind of the lemon to the bowl.
Cover and let sit for 24 hours.
Filter the syrup and use some warm water (approx 100 ml) to "wash" the flowers, squeeze well and filter and obtain 800 gr of liquid (syrup + "washing" water). I normally use a cloth for the filtering that makes the washing and squeezing easier.
Let cool and use as you would use any fruit juice to make a jelly!



madonnadelpiatto said...

this is the most spectacular jelly I have ever had. I am looking forward to making a new batch soon as my elder plants are ready to bloom. Grazie Giulia, this is a really special recipe!

Rebecca said...

I was just noticing the flowers starting to bloom this morning...I will be making this jam, as well. I think I may try the liqueur this year, too.

Valerie said...

How interesting! I've had jelly and liqueur made from elderberries but not the flowers. Sounds great.

melissamuldoon said...

Ciao Giulia! Your blog has popped up a couple of times today for me through various friends posting on FB - Giselle, Rebecca and Letizia (your posts about jam and frogs!) so I thought I'd swing by to check it out myself! I'm so glad I did! I love your location in le Marche and plan to book mark it for my next trip. (we are coming in September this year, but will be back the following) I had toyed with staying in Le Marche as I have a friend who lives in Urbino, but I got side tracked by all my Umbrian friends! So I will look forward to following you and find out more that is available in Le Marche!

A presto! Ci sentiamo!

Giulia said...

Wow! I have to admit that Letizia always said that this recipe would be a hit! :) Thank you Letizia for kindly push me to publish it!
Rebecca, in my opinion, whatever you decide to make with elderflower is a good idea! Just make sure that you leave a few flowers because the berries are so nice!
Valerie, I have to admit that I'm definitely NOT an elderberry fan... so I tend to forget my own advice and collect ALL the flowers!
Melissa, nice to meet you! I'm glad that you liked the blog!
I know how our Umbrian friends can convince people to go there once and again (I was there myself last Sunday ;) ).
Hope to see you soon!

Giulia said...

Ehem... when I wrote that elderberries are nice I ment NICE-LOOKING.... :S :D

Diana Strinati Baur said...

you are one talented lady, my friend. I can smell the fragrance all the way here in Piemonte!

skate 4 ever said...

Don't know that I've ever seen them here in southern Lazio. Is that possible? I'll have to keep a eye open for them. I assume they are in bloom in May? Thanks for the recipe. I LOVE to make liquors and jellies!

Giulia said...

I think that Elderflower can be found pretty much everywhere in Italy.. you may ask the locals if they know a place where "sambuco" grows.
If you find it and you try the recipe please tell me about it!

Giulia said...

Sorry I forgot... yes, Elderflower normally blooms in May.

Alice said...

Making elderflower jelly is a cool idea. There was just a discussion a few days ago on the Wild Green Smoothies group on Facebook about how to use Elderflowers and Elderberries. If anyone is interested, I posted an Elderflower cordial recipe on the group page, which you can find here:

You can also find information there about wild plants, including wild greens, wild fruit and other wild edibles.The group is a place to share healthy raw recipes using wild ingredients, especially (but not limited to) green smoothie recipes.

In case you're wondering, green smoothies are blended leafy greens with fruit. The taste of the fruit dominates the greens, so if made with the right ingredients, green smoothies are delicious and offer tremendous health benefits. Whether or not you consume green smoothies, the Wild Green Smoothies group is a great place to share knowledge and healthy raw recipes as well as to connect with like-minded people.