We know that some of you don't drink alcohol, and even if you do, sometimes it's good to have a non-alcoholic drink for dinners and parties. Like a baby shower, for instance. Here's a current spring favorite, quite easy to throw together but also outrageously pretty and delicious. It just requires one special ingredient from our favorite big-box furniture retailer.
Elderberry flower syrup! This syrup is a favorite ingredient in northern Europe, and IKEA always offers it in their food section. We reviewed it more extensively here. This is the cheapest place that I've found the syrup, and I always stock up when I go. A few teaspoons of this sweet, tangy, delicately floral syrup is a great addition to summer cocktails and drinks. I like how the sweetness is very light and crisp; it doesn't overwhelm the other flavors of a drink. It's one of the tastes that define spring and and summer for me.
Although I really like elderberry flower syrup in cocktails, like this classic elderflower cordial with gin, for this occasion I made a couple pitchers of soda water mixed with syrup, lime and fruit. Here's the recipe, with a strong recommendation to play around with this syrup yourself. It's sweet, delicious, and refreshing.
Blackberry Elderflower Spritzer with Mint
1 liter soda water, chilled
1/2 cup elderberry flower syrup, chilled
1 lime, juiced
About 1/3 cup blackberries, washed
1/4 mint leaves, bruised
Whisk the soda water and elderberry flower syrup with the lime. Stir in the blackberries and muddled mint leaves and serve immediately.
This is also very nice with lemon juice and strawberries.
(Images: Faith Durand)