Thursday, June 28, 2012

Homemade Elderflower syrup/ Hjemmelavet Hyldeblomst saft

So much has happened since arriving here in Denmark, 
and yet we have only been here for just over a month.
One thing I thought I would share for now is the making of elderflower syrup.
I am loving the abundance of wild herbs and foods here, one such abundance is the Elders, they are absolutely everywhere, and I am very much looking forward for the 
berries to start ripening come autumn. 
This is the first time I have made the elderflower syrup, which is very popular here, 
and used widely mixed with water, in both the carbonated and still versions.
I immagine it will be wonderful in white wine or champagne as well as with water, how it is traditionally served here.
There is all kinds of folklore attached to the elderberry tree here in Denmark.
For one the tree is, since olden days, said to keep trouble away from the house near which it grows,
 and you must ask "hyldemor" or mother elder for permission before cutting from her tree.

The syrup is very easy to make and this is how I did it...

 First I cut a basket full of the flowers, the flowers should be fully blooming.

 Back at my moms (we move to the country side august 1st) I cut the main stems from the flowers as these will make the syrup bitter.
 Then in 3 liters (just short of 1 gallon) of boiling water dissolve 1kg (2.2 pounds) of organic sugar.
That is a lot of sugar, and I would like to try with honey next time although I imagine it will change the flavor quite a bit. If I had Rappadura I would use that, 
but have not found it here yet, nor looked for that matter:)
Once the sugar is dissolved remove the pot from the heat and add three sliced organic lemons and the flowers. Make sure the flowers are completely covered, put the lid on and allow to cool completely before placing in the fridge for 4 days, stirring a couple of times daily. 
 After four days, strain and pour in sterilized glass bottles (sterilize like when making jam, by lowering bottle into boiling water for a few minutes) and keep in the fridge.
The syrup can also be frozen in plastic bottles to keep longer. 
The way it is served here is 1 part syrup to 3-4 parts water.
The smell is heavenly and the taste is sweet and summery...