Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Cordial it is not - Elder is my favourite tipple


PRE-SCRIPT ~ There have been visitors to this blog page using the search term: thunder bugs in my elderflower cordial. Me Too !! So, after experimenting today (a week after the post below) I have the answer. So, please read this post, then go to the new post on my blog page for an update at www.lifeintheshire.blogspot.com Its easy to deal with thunderbugs in your precious elderflower cordial !

The elder is in flower, basking in the sun, the lemons and oranges are waiting, the Tramper is ready to go and .... Boots the Chemist are not being cordial towards their customers - down here in deepest Dorset they have taken over all the local independent chemist shops.

This really is the last straw ~ Boots reacting locally to considerations global, such as bombs and illegal drugs. Boots have taken away one of the many benefits of living rurally, that of independent shops. There used to be three chemists in the local town; all three have been taken over by Boots, who closed one. None of the Boots stores in any of the local towns I have tried have any stocks of a necessary ingredient to enjoying summer in the countryside.

Independent shops have local independent knowledge and are independent of the views and stock ordering protocols of large conglomerates. Local independent chemists know that as soon as the elder is in flower, locals will want to buy CITRIC ACID ... not for bombs (well, maybe bathbombs !) or for cutting in with heroin or cocaine, but for making non-alcoholic summer in a bottle.

Would I have been suspected of such nefarious activity, wheeling in with my smart sun hat and latest bit of jewellery ? (what a fab excuse to indulge in sparkly stuff ... Medic Alert !) A local independent chemist would have been able to judge my reason and sold me for the princely sum of £1.19 a little pot of this essential ingredient of Elderflower Cordial.

Buggeh Boots. Online it is. LINK

Just don't let it rain and ruin the elder flowers until I have harvested my 30 heads of creamy sumptiousness. We need the rain, oh how we need it and my water butt is drained dry so the beans and courgettes are having to put up with tap water, as are the birds in the bird bath, but rain will ruin the flowers, so please not rain just yet. Until the postman has delivered the means to the end result and I am sipping the heavenly cordial. So, actually, thinking again, not let it rain during the day, only overnight, as sipping inside out of the rain is not quite the same as sipping outside in the dappled shade amongst the flowers and birdsong.

For a recipe click on this LINK or go to www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/elderflowercordial_6465


Blogger Charlesdawson said...

I hope you get your citric acid in time. The elders are out earlier this year, but if they last long enough for harvesteable gooseberries, you can make a very nice jelly of them both.

I found out about the Boots ban this time last year. "Do I LOOK like a mad bomber??" I asked the assistant, who seemed so terrified that I must conclude I did.

Monday, 30 May 2011 at 19:59:00 BST  
Blogger Sally said...

Charles !!!
Sweatheart !!! (blush...)
You Are Back !!!
Wonderful ... and I can picture you as the mad bomber in Boots.
Please can I have your receipt for gooseberry and elderflower jelly - which I think may be (a) healthier than the fat content of my stupendous gooseberry fool made for my birthday lunch last August (you are invited to this August's!) and (b) healthier than the sugar content of today's strained (the price of muslin !) and bottled cordial.
BTW I was not happy with the huge population of thunder bugs (whatever they are called) living on the elderflowers, which migrated to the kitchen window as soon as I decanted them from the collecting bag. Its far too early in the summer for those criters.
Huge sigh, missed you !

Monday, 30 May 2011 at 22:51:00 BST  

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