Rhubarb cordial with elderflower

Rhubarb recipe

Rhubarb cordial taken to the next level

So far it’s been a fantastic year for rhubarb. Lots of rain and just enough sunshine. Don’t think I’ve watered the little chaps more than a couple of times and they just keep growing.

First up in the rhubarb indulgence was of course some pie with feta cheese, followed by a lot of of rhubarb curd and some other goodies, before I collected a huge helping and made loads of rhubarb cordial.

But this is the elderflower season and since it goes so well together with, amongst other things, rhubarb – I chose to combine the two for the first time, in another set of cordial bottles.

If the rhubarb has become dry or if you only are using very young rhubarb, the 1.5 litres below will be a bit much. Then, as a benchmark, stick to 1.5 litres when you have cut it into small pieces. We are talking around 1-1.5 kg. However, rather too much rhubarb than too little.

Make sure the elderflowers are in full blossom when you pick them and I recommend rinsing it before you put it into the bowl/bucket/cordial-making-box or place them on a white kitchen towel which will have any unwanted inhabitants evacuating the flowers.

Rhubarb cordial with elderflower

Time: 20 minutes work and 2 days waiting

  • 1.5 kg rhubarb
  • 10 elderflower crowns
  • 2 lemons
  • 30 g citric acid
  • 2 litres of water
  • 1 kg caster sugar (give or take, according to taste)
  1. Cut the rhubarbs into smaller pieces. I usually make about 5 mm thick slices. Then put them into a big saucepan or pot.
  2. Slice the lemons and add them to the rhubarb, together with the citric acid.
  3. Rinse the elderflowers and put it into the bowl with the rhubarb.
  4. Boil the water and pour it over the rhubarb.
  5. Cover with a lid and allow to cool for at least 24 hours, preferably 48 hours.
  6. Strain off. Since the elderflowers contain smaller parts, a filter cloth or a muslin can be useful for a totally clear cordial. Otherwise, an ordinary strainer will do fine.
  7. Stir in around 1 kg of caster sugar. A bit more if you think it’s too sour and a bit less if you prefer it less sweet.
  8. Bring to the boil to maximum heat and boil for around 5 minutes. Skim it off continuously.
  9. Remove from the heat, leave it too cool down and then pour into bottles.
  10. I usually fill half litre plastic bottles up to 3/4 and then freeze them. Then you always have small bottles you can bring out as you go along, in the summer.