Know your herbs – How to make Lemon Verbena Cordial

Lemon Verbena is one of my favorite herbs in my little herb garden that has grown so beautifully over the summer. I always loved the idea of having a huge, voluptuous herb garden that I could pick fresh herbs from. And this summer I have gotten so much joy from watching the herbs grow and flower and educating the kids on what’s what.FullSizeRender 3

Lemon Verbena is one of the herbs that I have grown and used for making a nice lemony, zingy summer cordial that tastes just delicious with some sparkling water. It’s a tall, spare, long-leafed plant with slender leaves and a fragrance to die for. It’s not hard to capture that fragrance in a simple syrup. So this is what I did today. The first batch I made at the start of the summer went down a treat. With the last summer days fading fast I wanted to make the most of the herbs before they die and capture the taste of summer. Also, I love making cordial.

I am making 2 bottles of it so I used

1.5l Water

2kg Sugar

1 lemon

2 handfuls Lemon Verbena Leaves

80g Citric Acid

Making Cordial isn’t like baking. You really can’t go wrong. Throw it all in a pot. Let it simmer for 2 mins and then let it infuse over night. It will last for a number of weeks in the fridge. Not only does this one taste deliciously zingy but it also has a number of health benefits.

FullSizeRender 2I was delighted to find out that lemon verbena has the ability to help with weight loss goals. (I might have to ease off on the wine and drink a bit more lemon verbena tea, me thinks!) But in addition to that it also protects your muscles, reduces inflammation, boosts the immune system, calms the stomach, soothes nerves, and clears up congestion. The last two I like a lot. Us mamas, we do get stressed from time to time, don’t we! So get that into you! The antioxidant compounds found in lemon verbena can also have an impact on the hormonal imbalance in the body. While this effect isn’t significant, it has been known for its calming properties and helpful for those with nervous afflictions or chronic stress, as it can ease the mind and calm the body. What’s not to love! Another common use of lemon verbena is as herbal tea. I will be drying the leaves and then steep them throughout the winter for a powerful boost.

Soon the elderberries will be ready to harvest so watch this space for a blogpost on Elderberry Cordial if this is your thing. :0

 

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