by Ana Sarac
My childhood in continental Croatia was marked by the magical smell and gentle and beautiful taste of my grandma’s elderflower cordial, or sok od bazge as we call it.
Besides raising beautiful memories of my care-free spring childhood and being extra delicious, it has many health benefits because of its antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties, and also it helps boost the functioning of the immune system.
Elderflower heads are picked on sunny days in spring, in plains in May and in the hills (higher spots), it can be found until mid-June. The woods and hills are perfect spots for picking elderflower heads that are not contaminated with city pollution.
Try to pick nice fully bloomed heads with white petals and rich in yellow powder and store them gently in cloth or paper bag.
Grandma’s elderflower cordial recipe.
30 elderflower heads
3 litres of water
4 dg citric acid
3 lemons (untreated)
3 kg of sugar
Day 1 – Soak the previously washed flowers in water with citric acid and lemon slices. Mix well and let it stand in a cool, dark place for 24 hours.
Day 2 – Sieve the liquid, add sugar and stir well. Let it stand for 24 hours with occasional mixing.
Day 3 – The cordial is ready to be stored in glass bottles. This way you can keep it up to a year in a cool and dark place.
This is a measure of about 4 liters of syrup. If you want more or less, adjust the proportions to your needs. For every 10 heads use 1 liter of water, 1 kilogram of sugar and 1 lemon.