If there’s a bustle in your hedgerow …

If there’s a bustle in your hedgerow, don’t be alarmed now,
It’s just a spring clean for the May queen.
(to quote Led Zeppelin)

Or possibly it will be someone like me picking hawthorn flowers. The hedges around the farm are white with blossom and on a hot sunny day (like today) the sweet, intense smell can be quite overpowering. Once the flowers start to age and turn yellow, their scent turns to a sickly smell with a touch of public lavatory pong. In my opinion.

But at the moment they are perfect for gathering. At the weekend I shall use some of the flowers to flavour a panna cotta but today I’ve made some Hawthorn Flower cordial. I dropped in a few of the pink flowers, which is why it’s such a glorious colour.

To make Hawthorn Cordial:

Take 5 cups of flowers (snip off the green stems) and put them in bowl, picking them over for any stray bugs.

Dissolve 2 cups of sugar in 2 cups of water over a low heat and then increase the heat and boil for three minutes. Pour this over the flowers, give it a good stir and then return to the saucepan. Bring back to the boil and then take off the heat and add the juice of a large lemon or 2 limes.

Leave your cordial to cool and then pour through a sieve into a sterilised bottle.

This should keep for a couple of weeks in the fridge. Dilute it with water or soda water.



7 thoughts on “If there’s a bustle in your hedgerow …

  1. Mrs Thomasina Tittlemouse says:

    Gorgeous pics! And gorgeous cordial too – I never knew you could use hawthorn flowers like this. The colour is just perfect. What does it taste of? Apart from hawthorn flowers I mean! Well, what I really mean is, what does a hawthorn flower taste of?


  2. teawithhazel says:

    oh..i love cordial made with flowers especially foraged ones..i’d not heard that hawthorn flowers could be used this way either but i’m delighted to learn that they are..


  3. knitsofacto says:

    Eek, my comment was eaten … I’ll try again.

    My brother in law used to make this. Not my favourite to be honest, though it’s years since I’ve tried any. What I really fancy is some of Beth’s Raspberry Gin … yum !


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