With the flu season upon us - and a particularly nasty version of the flu this year - I thought I would make a batch of Elderberry Rob to help kill the germs. Make up with hot water 1 part syrup to 3 parts hot water.
4 lbs (1.8 kg) Elderberries, weighed on stems (mine weren't as I had already strigged and frozen them)
2 x 5 cm (2 inch) pieces cinnamon stick
1 piece root ginger, bruised
2 chips nutmeg (I used about a teaspoon of powdered)
5 ml (1tspn) cloves
5 ml (1tspn) allspice berries
275 ml ( 1 1/2 pints) water
350g (12 oz) honey to each 375 ml (1 pint) liquid
150 ml (1/4 pint) brandy
I only had half this amount of Elderberries, so halved the ingredients, though I've just realized I used the full amount of water, and the full amount of brandy.
Take the elderberries from the stalks and put them into a saucepan with the spices and water. Bring them gently to the boil and simmer them until the pan is full of juice, about 20 mins. Put a piece of muslin or an old linen tea towel over a large bowl (I used my old jelly making net). Pour the elderberries through it, and gather the sides together and squeeze out as much juice as you can. Measure it and return to the cleaned saucepan.
Bring the juice to the boil and add the honey. Stir to dissolve it and then boil the syrup for 10 mins. Take the pan from the heat and wait until the syrup stops bubbling. Pour in the brandy. Pour the hot cordial into hot sterilised bottles and cork it tightly. Fills about 1 1/2 wine bottles.
Recipe from "The Countryside Cook Book" by Gail Duff.
I had bought some plums last week so made a pan of the Plum, Orange and Ginger Blondies . . .
As a change from a breadmaker loaf, I put the ingredients for a 70% Wholemeal loaf on a dough setting in the Panasonic, and then sknocked back and shaped this loaf and let it rise again before bunging it in the oven. Nice and crusty and really tasty.
Finally, the cold weather has bought both the "passing strays" back into our orbit. This is the Big Black Tom. He does a good line in glares when he still has biscuits in the bowl, to tell me he wants MORE tinned food please, and jump to it!
There is meant to be a return of the colder weather again on Monday/Tuesday, so keep warm everyone.
Meanwhile, I thought I had got well stocked up, only to find that THREE things need AAA batteries (I have none of those, only AAs). Let's hope the car is fixed on Monday.