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Day 24 #30DaysWild – A Wonderful Recipe for Meadowsweet Cordial

Meadowsweet is just starting to flower in our British hedgerows. It is a wonderful herb, with a beautiful fragrance, which, in my opinion, easily rivals that of the Elderflower. We first published this delicious Meadowsweet Cordial recipe last year, but have updated it to share with you for #30DaysWild.

Meadowsweet is a herbaceous perennial shrub, native to Europe, but also found in North America. It enjoys damp conditions and grows abundantly throughout most of the UK in meadows, ditches, and beside roads and streams. It is also known as Lady of the Meadow, Queen of the Ditch and Bridewort among other names.

 

Meadowsweet is just starting to flower in our hedgerows. It is a wonderful herb, with a beautiful fragrance, which, in my opinion, easily rivals that of elderflower. We first published this delicious Medowsweet Cordial recipe last year, but have updated it to share with you for #30DaysWild

The name Meadowsweet is said to come, not from the fact that it grows in meadows as one would expect, but from its early use to flavour mead, evolving from Middle English Medewurte, as it appears in Chaucer’s The Knight’s Tale. We find in its long documented history, that it was valued as an important strewing herb in Elizabethan times, and was considered one of the most important herbs used by Druids. Meadowsweet has been used for colds, respiratory problems, acid indigestion, peptic ulcers, arthritis and rheumatism, skin diseases, and diarrhea.

 

Meadowsweet is just starting to flower in our hedgerows. It is a wonderful herb, with a beautiful fragrance, which, in my opinion, easily rivals that of elderflower. We first published this delicious Medowsweet Cordial recipe last year, but have updated it to share with you for #30DaysWild

In the mid nineteenth century Salicylic acid was isolated from Meadowsweet which lead to the later creation of aspirin. The word “aspirin” is derived from “spirin,” based on Meadowsweet's Latin name, “Spiraea.” It is important to note that the general wisdom is that people who are sensitive to Salicylates (this includes some asthmatics) should avoid this herb, as should those who are taking warfarin, as there is the potential of an additive effect. I would also be prudent and avoid use during pregnancy and lactation.

 

Meadowsweet is just starting to flower in our hedgerows. It is a wonderful herb, with a beautiful fragrance, which, in my opinion, easily rivals that of elderflower. We first published this delicious Medowsweet Cordial recipe last year, but have updated it to share with you for #30DaysWild

For this recipe you will need: Large bunch of Meadowsweet (about 50 heads), 2 Lemons, 500g sugar (split in 2) and 2 litres Water

Bring the water to a boil, and dissolve in 250g of the sugar and add the lemon juice. Then simply strip the open flowers from their stems and add to the water. I look to add a really good covering of flowers on top of the water.

 

Meadowsweet is just starting to flower in our hedgerows. It is a wonderful herb, with a beautiful fragrance, which, in my opinion, easily rivals that of elderflower. We first published this delicious Medowsweet Cordial recipe last year, but have updated it to share with you for #30DaysWild

The leaves and stems of Meadowsweet contain the far higher concentration of Salicylates which gives them a medicinal taste, so it is important to remove just the flowers for this preparation - we are hoping for a fragrant, honeyed flavour rather than an antiseptic one!

 

Meadowsweet is just starting to flower in our hedgerows. It is a wonderful herb, with a beautiful fragrance, which, in my opinion, easily rivals that of elderflower. We first published this delicious Medowsweet Cordial recipe last year, but have updated it to share with you for #30DaysWild

Return the pan to the heat, and bring back to a simmer. As soon as it reaches simmering point, remove the pan, give everything a good stir and leave, covered, to sit overnight. The next day strain out the flowers, add the other 250g of sugar and boil for 5 minutes.

 

Meadowsweet is just starting to flower in our hedgerows. It is a wonderful herb, with a beautiful fragrance, which, in my opinion, easily rivals that of elderflower. We first published this delicious Medowsweet Cordial recipe last year, but have updated it to share with you for #30DaysWild

Whilst still hot, decant the cordial into warm glass bottles, which have been sterilised in a warm oven for about 10 minutes. Be aware that adding the hot cordial to cold glass bottles may cause them to crack, so take care to ensure they are at similar temperatures. Seal, and allow to cool. You can then add a pretty label. The cordial will keep for 4-6 weeks in the fridge.

 

Meadowsweet is just starting to flower in our hedgerows. It is a wonderful herb, with a beautiful fragrance, which, in my opinion, easily rivals that of elderflower. We first published this delicious Medowsweet Cordial recipe last year, but have updated it to share with you for #30DaysWild

If you have enjoyed this post, please check out our recipe for Stinging Nettle Cordial and Making Meadowsweet Mead post. We'd also love it if you shared our recipe with your friends...

 

Fabulous recipe for Meadowsweet Cordial, wonderfully refreshing and made with foraged ingredients

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8 Comments

  • Reply Silly Mummy

    I’ve seen this flower but never knew it could be used in cordials! Intrigued to try it now! #brilliantblogposts

    July 7, 2016 at 2:06 am
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      It’s a lovely flower with the most amazing fragrance and flavour – let me know what you think if you try it. We’re going to try making Mead with it next week :)

      July 8, 2016 at 12:12 pm
  • Reply Sarah - Arthurwears

    I’ve never heard of this. I don’t think I’d date pick it myself just in case it was something different!

    Ps : I found it hard to read this post on my mobile browser as your share buttons on the right hand side cut of the text on that side.

    #brillblogposts

    June 30, 2016 at 9:53 pm
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      Once you know it, it’s easy to identify due to its fragrance, but it is often mixed in with all the other white and creamy coloured flowers in the hedgerows so can be difficult to pick out by sight alone. Thank you for the heads up about the share buttons have removed the from the side – really appreciate you pointing it out x

      June 30, 2016 at 10:05 pm
  • Reply Hannah Spannah

    How on earth have I not heard of this?! My mum made an elderberry cordial for my son last year and if I find that we have this growing near us (we should I imagine, up in North Yorkshire) we’ll definitely give this a go. I say we, and mean my Mum! Thanks for joining the #weekendblogshare

    June 25, 2016 at 1:02 pm
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      I don’t know why its not better known, it’s such a beautiful herb – but I find that not many people have heard of it. Let me know if you and your Mum try it, and perhaps get your Mum to make our Nettle Cordial at the same time – that’s delicious too!

      June 30, 2016 at 1:10 pm
  • Reply ahopefuldad

    This sounds delicious. Can’t wait to try some.
    #weekendblogshare

    June 25, 2016 at 7:54 am
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