Sunday, 3 November 2013

Elderberry Syrup

Take some elderberries and stick them into a pot, with just enough water to cover ('scuse the steam, they wuz boiling).  Bring to the boil, simmer for 20 minutes.
Strain into a measuring jug.  For every pint of juice, add a pound of sugar and 12 cloves.  As you can see, I barely managed a quarter of a pint, which is a shame.  I might have to go out and see if the late onset of winter means there are still elderberries knocking about on trees anywhere.
Bring back to the boil, then simmer for 10  minutes.  Allow to cool, pour into a sterilised bottle. If you have loads of syrup, requiring numerous bottles, try to divide up the cloves equally between bottles.
Take a spoonful when needed to combat colds and flu.  In fact, if you have plenty, feel free to take a spoonful every day and prevent, rather than cure.  I shall have to hoard mine carefully to use only in dire emergencies though. 
And if you are stuck for something to do whilst the syrup is simmering away, feel free to attend to your drains, as I did.  Of course, once I've done that, I went to catch up with my blog reading (been saving them up for a lazy afternoon), and found that I could have used salt for the same purpose, which would have been a more frugal option.
My way is more spectacular though - feel free to invite small children to watch and charge them admission to offset the cost of ingredients. 
You will need soda crystals, citric acid, and a kettle full of water. 

A tbsp. of soda, a tbsp. of acid, and hey presto - fizz and hiss and foam like there's no tomorrow.  As the stuff is doing its, well, stuff, to your drains, put the kettle on and once it's boiled, tip it down the drain.

All done.
As for dinner, well, a Sunday with OH home means roast potatoes, which tonight were accompanied by a chicken pie.
Here's the filling - chicken and sweetcorn in white sauce -

- and here's the pie. 
I helpfully labelled in case I forgot what it was before dinner.  It worked - as I took it out the oven, I read the crust and immediately knew it was a pie.


And I am still writing, and that makes me happy, even if it is a contributing cause of suddenly existing in a state of utter overwhelm.  Still, one day at a time.... Sometimes that's all we can do.



  1. You're so right, one day at a time. That's what I always tell myself when I'm feeling overwhelmed. Hope you manage to find more time for yourself soon. The elderberry syrup looks lovely. I'm a big fan of things made from the hedgerow.

    1. There's just something quite magic to going out for a walk and coming back with some free food, isn't there ? :D

  2. mmm Pie. Must try the drain stuff, we tend to go with caustic soda. Where do you buy the citric acid? If it is food grade then I can make some sherbert too.

    1. Asian supermarket ! I tend to grab some when I go to stock up on spices - which I'm gonna have to go and do quite soon, running low on pretty much everything. Food grade and very competitively priced - I use it in cordials and to add acidity to sundried tomatoes stored in oil (affects the taste much less than vinegar).