Monday, November 24, 2014

Foraging for flowers, Monday, November 24 2014

The elderflowers have been in flower for the past few weeks so I have been out gathering. My source of flowers involves scrambling along a railway line and hoping there are no snakes in the long grass near the trees. This year on my first foraging jaunt about a month ago, I gathered not only some flowers to make sparkling elder and elder syrup but some cuttings to propagate as well. My cuttings are now little plants in pots so now I need to decide  where to plant them so one day in the future I will have my own trees from which to gather the flowers.
It is so easy to make the sparkling elder, I think I might gather a few more flowers tomorrow to make just one more batch for summer.  I might try some experimenting with other flavour sparkling fruit drinks this summer if I have fruit in excess. I have read that red rose petals can also be used which might be worth trying.
The sparkling drink can be stored in the freezer in PET bottles and still retain its fizz but rather than freezing the elder syrup in order to preserve it, this year I have put some in Fowlers preserving jars. It should last for months if not years this way and a useful idea if you are running out of room in the freezer.