I made my first batch of wild violet syrup last night. I had half expected it to taste like sugar water, but I was pleasantly surprised. It turned out to have a nice sweet floral taste and made a nice addition to my evening tea. I’ve always been familiar with wild violets, but never by that name. My grandma always called them fighting roosters, because kids used to compete by hooking the “crooks” behind the flower head together and pulling to see which head would pop off first. The person with a flower still attached would be the victor.
For this recipe you will need:
- Wild violet blossoms
- Lemon juice
I used white sugar in this recipe to achieve the ideal color, but I imagine you could use any type of sugar. Amounts will depend on the amount of violet blossoms you harvest.
Making violet syrup is simple. The most time consuming part of the process is picking the flower heads. Stooping and picking, and in my case, stooping and picking with a camera dangling from your neck. How many violet blossoms you use is up to you. The recipe is a 1:1 ratio so you can use as many or as little as you wish.
Once you have picked your violets, place them in a jar or glass and add enough boiling water to cover the flowers.
Let the flowers steep for an hour or two (until the water cools). Your violet water will look blue or green at this point, the violet color comes later when the lemon is added. At this point strain the flowers from the infused water and discard. Be sure it’s clear of any debris. Add equal parts violet infused water and sugar to a saucepan. It’s going to look something like this:
Slowly add small amounts of lemon juice until desired color is reached. Now it looks like this:
Pretty cool huh? Chemistry!
Now slowly bring the sugar water to a low boil for a minute or two. Keep an eye on it and stir occasionally. That’s it! You have violet syrup now! Taste it. Isn’t it good?! Who would have thought?!
Transfer your syrup to whatever container you wish. Just make sure it’s a clear glass container, because you are going to want to show this stuff off.