Sunday, July 01, 2012

Elderjelly

I had a little inspiration one day. My dietician aka Creamy aka Smietanka aka Mrs Pepe told me I should eat more gelatine based sweets because my knees need it. Who am I to argue with her now? So I wanted to try and make my own rather than buy all these things with additives. I wanted something like a wine gum but something natural and not too sweet. So I fell onto the idea of one of my favourite flavours in the world - the elderflower. So, off I went all the way down stairs and across the road to a tree to pick two bunches. Yes, it was that hard to collect.

I read a few sites on the net about making these things but I didn't want to make them too sweet, where many say to add sugar and a normal jelly mix and gelatin I tried it a little differently.

Shake out the little creepy crawlies

I used M&S sheet gelatin as I could only find powdered gelatin in the shops I looked at.

Then I proceeded to cut away the greatest parts, I wasn't too anal about it, just the thick bits

Then I soaked it in the boiled water. For about an hour. I kept aside a handful of the prettiest flowers


Sheets, pretty cool things.

I also wanted a little tart so added half a lemon (juice only, but next time I will add rind I think)

Then I added the sugar, lemon juice and the handful of other flowers to a bain marie and stirred gently till the sugar dissolved.

I added some to the fridge to make this "normal" jelly
It was really delicate and not too sweet. But not, the consistency I had hoped for, as it was more like jelly than a gummibear type thing.


Another section I added to a silicon baking sheet and put into the freezer.


They came out like jelly blocks and were really lovely, especially in hot weather.
You can of course see the flowers inside
cute.
So the recipe for those interested, even if it wasn't what I had hoped for:

2 big white (try to get without dead flowers) elderflower heads
450ml Boiled water (use hot to extract maximum flavour)
4 1/2 sheets of gelatin
50ml of cold water to add to the gelatin
200ml sugar
juice of half a lemon

-Cut away all the flowers removing as much of the green bits as possible (you could use a fork, but I have a really fine pair of scissors on my Swiss army knife perfect for this)
-Add flowers to a bowl and pour over the boiled water (straight from the kettle is best)
let soak for at least half an hour, the longer the better of course. Due to the beautiful smell of these flowers you may want to cover the bowl to stop bugs coming to taste it.
-Cut up the gelatin into small pieces and dissolve in the water
-When you have finished soaking the flowers strain them and squeeze out as much liquid as you can, as in the end this is your product.
-Put the liquid into a bay marie over a low heat, then add the sugar and lemon juice stirring to dissolve the sugar I found a soft spatula works best.
-Once it is dissolved sprinkle in the handful of leaves you saved. Mix them but no need to leave it on the heat for this.
-Leaving the bowl over the pan add the gelatin and stir until it has dissolved and there are no lumps. With this volume it should be quite quick.
-Then pour into your molds, tray, pan whatever you are using and let set in the fridge or freezer.
-When set, eat it.

4 comments:

Crawler said...

My mum sometimes makes something we call elderflower juice (however it's technically compote (according to the dictionary) and it's brilliant! But elderjelly? Wouldn't even think about. I must try it sometime.

Gee Em said...

Yeah it was really great. I like to use the Elderflowers a lot as they have an almost tropical taste. They are also great in pancakes :D

Crawler said...

Oh man, you make look at it in a completely new way. Pancakes would be perfect, because my girlfriend loves basically every type of pancake (sweet, salty, sour), but she doesn't like elderflower. I must convince her :D

Gee Em said...

haha I am glad I can help! :D

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