It’s jam making season again but pigeons have stripped the currant bushes bare.
So, move on to plan B: The gooseberries are still there and the next best activity at this time of year is sorbet making.
Following a recent visit to my friend Jacqui, she introduced me to elderflower cordial. A new discovery for me. I used to look at the lovely tree in the garden but never thought of using the flowers. I can’t believe it took me so long to experiment with that.
So it’s gooseberry sorbet with elderflower cordial. An absolute treat!
Let’s start with the cordial. This will keep for a fortnight in a refrigerator. It can be diluted with still or sparkling water to make it into a drink .
- Prepare a sugar syrup by dissolving 300 g sugar into 300 ml water in a saucepan, then set aside to cool down
- Rinse the flowers (for 1 litre, pick 8 heads) and place them in a bowl and cover with the cold syrup
- Add the juice of 2 lemons and 1 table spoon of citric acid (available at any chemist)
- Cover and leave to rest overnight in the refrigerator
- Sterilise bottles by washing them in the dishwasher or washing them well with hot water and placing them in a medium hot oven (check the glass will withstand the heat)
- The next day, strain the mixture with a sieve with fine mesh and bottle
Now for the sorbet…
- Rinse 500 g of gooseberries, add sufficient water to cover them and stew until the fruit is soft
- Using a sieve with fine mesh, press the fruits with a wooden spoon into a purée
- Set aside to cool down
- Add 200 ml of the elder flower cordial into the gooseberry mixture
- Place it in the sorbet maker (follow manufacturer’s instructions regarding time, etc)
Serve with wafers and decorate with mint leaves.