Home-made elderflower curd

Elderflower curd with cup & pot of tea

My beautiful sambucus nigra is still blooming, so I was on the lookout for another recipe in which I could use the flowers. These days, I find so much inspiration on Instagram; one of my Insta-buddies had just posted a photo of some delicious-looking elderflower curd she’d made, so I thought I’d give that a go.

zesting and juicing lemons Elderflower curd ingredients in a saucepan

She used the wild variety of elderflower which has delicate off white flowers however, the flowers on mine are tinged purple. I wondered how that would affect the colour of the resulting curd. I was worried that it would turn out a sludgy brown, but I needn’t have been apprehensive. It had a slight pinkish blush to the usual yellow colour.

This recipe makes a single, average-sized jar, but you can easily multiply the quantities. If you don’t think that you’ll consume all the curd in a week or two, make sure that you thoroughly sterilise all your post-cooking equipment; jars, lids, jelly bag/sieve, spoon/spatula, funnel etc. Simply boil them up in a large jam pan/saucepan of water.

straining elderflower curd through a jelly bag into a measuring jug Elderflower curd in a glass jar

The taste was gorgeous; rich and fragrant. So far, we’ve had it on fruit scones, but it would be perfect in sandwiches, toast or between the layers of a Victoria sponge. This is definitely an elderflower recipe I’ll be returning to every summer.

Click here or on the image below to save this elderflower curd recipe to Pinterest

Home-made elderflower curd recipe

Elderflower curd with cup & pot of tea

Elderflower curd

Cook Time 1 hour
Course Condiment
Cuisine British


  • 3 large or 6 small elderflower heads you can use either white or pink flowers
  • 50 g/1¾oz unsalted butter
  • 200 g/7oz white granulated sugar
  • lemons zest & juice
  • 2 eggs


  • Sterilise a lidded jam jar, jelly bag or sieve, spatula and measuring jug. Set aside for the end
  • Put all the ingredients except the eggs into a saucepan over a low heat. Stir until the butter is melted and the sugar has dissolved
  • Transfer the mixture to a heatproof bowl and allow the contents to cool slightly (about 5 minutes)
  • In the meantime, bring a saucepan of water to a simmer (ensure the heatproof bowl can sit on top of the saucepan without the water coming into contact with the base)
  • Add the eggs to the mixture and put the heatproof bowl on top of the saucepan of simmering water
  • Stir occasionally until the mixture thickens to the consistency of custard (about 45 minutes)
  • Pour the mixture through the sterilised jelly bag/sieve into the measuring jug. Push the contents through using the spatula, if necessary
  • Transfer the curd into the sterilised jar and cover immediately with the lid. Allow to cool completely before using
Elderflower curd ingredients
Keyword curd, elderflower, forage

Cakes & Bakes: Yorkshire curd tarts

'Cakes & Bakes' blog post banner

Two Yorkshire curd tarts on a wire cooling rack | H is for Home

I’d never eaten Yorkshire curd tarts before I’d moved to Yorkshire. I’ve never eaten a home made one until this week – just supermarket-bought… which were nice, but just nice. If you’ve never had one, I’d say they’re a cross between a cross between an Eccles cake, cheesecake and an egg custard tart.

They’ve been made since the 17th century, usually around Whitsuntide, using leftover curds from cheesemaking. Rather than being cooked in cake or tart tins, they’re traditionally done in saucers. Don’t try this if you think your lovely vintage china saucers may shatter in the oven!

I’ve wanted to make them before but I’ve never seen curd for sale anywhere. Now that I know how easy it is to make my own curds, I’ve given Yorkshire curd tarts a go!

You’ll need 2 pints of full-fat milk to make the right amount of curd for this recipe. Don’t be disappointed by the curd to whey ratio. All that resultant liquid shouldn’t be wasted. It can be used in bread making, cooking pasta, soaking & cooking pulses, lassi… some people even recommend using it as a natural shampoo!

I used a recipe from Joan Poulson’s Old Yorkshire Recipes teamed with Delia Smith’s version of shortcrust pastry.

Two Yorkshire curd tarts on a wire cooling rack | H is for Home

Yorkshire curd tarts


  • For the filling
  • 225 g/8oz curds use 2pts of milk & 2tbs white or white wine vinegar
  • 2 eggs
  • 115 g/4oz sugar
  • 55 g/2oz currants
  • small knob of butter melted
  • a little grated lemon rind I left this out
  • pinch of grated nutmeg
  • For the shortcrust pastry
  • 115 g/4oz plain flour
  • 55 g/2oz butter at room temperature
  • pinch of salt
  • dash of cold water


  • To make the pastry: Sift the flour and salt into a large mixing bowl
  • Cut the butter into small cubes and add to the flour
  • Using your fingertips, gently rub the fat into the flour
  • When the mixture looks uniformly crumbly, sprinkle over about 2tbs of cold water
  • Bring the mixture together using a round-bladed dinner knife; mixing and cutting
  • Bring the mixture together with your hands to form a smooth ball of dough that will leave the bowl clean
  • Rest the pastry, wrapped in cling film or tin foil, in the fridge for 20-30 minutes while you make the filling
  • To make the filling: Heat the milk until almost boiling and add the vinegar
  • Remove from the heat and stir until it curdles
  • Allow to cool slightly before straining through a fine muslin you can save the whey to use in bread baking or soaking/cooking pulses
  • Mix the curds with the dried fruit and flavourings
  • Beat the eggs well and stir into the curd mixture with the sugar and melted butter
  • Roll out the pastry and line 4 oven-proof saucers/sideplates before adding the curd mixture
  • Bake in a moderate oven (180ºC/350F) for 20 minutes or until set

Simple home made paneer

'Simple home made paneer' blog post banner

Home-made paneer, cubed | H is for Home

I’m a regular stalker of the discounted shelves and fridges in our local supermarket. I’m very strict though, I only ever pick something up that I would have bought anyway. On a recent, late evening trip to Morrisons in Todmorden, I saw a 4-pint bottle of whole organic milk for 89p down from £1.84. We don’t generally use full fat milk, and we never buy it in such large quantities, but I knew that I wanted to try making home made paneer.

Paneer is a simple curd cheese – similar to cottage cheese, mascarpone and quark – that relies on acid rather than rennet to form. From earlier research I knew that only full fat milk really works – and you need a fair amount of milk to make a big enough portion of paneer worth the process. You also need the acid which separates the curds from the whey. This can be in the form of natural yoghurt, citric acid, lemon juice or vinegar.

The process was like a doing a school science experiment. Heat the milk in a big saucepan, add the acid, stir and the alchemy of the separating liquid from solid happened instantaneously! I knew it was simple to do – but didn’t realise it was that simple. Why hadn’t I done it before? Paneer costs about £7 per kilo in the shops – when you can actually get hold of it that is!

We used some of it when making a curry and some of it like you would ricotta, in a spinach & paneer lasagne. We saved the whey and used it in place of the water when making a dhal. It made the dish slightly sweeter, creamier and tastier.

Here’s how I made it…

Simple home made paneer

Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian


  • 4 pints/2 litres full cream milk
  • 150 g plain natural yoghurt
  • 2 tsp white wine vinegar
  • or 1½tsp powdered citric acid
  • or 1½tsp lemon juice
  • ½ tsp salt


  • Sterilise a large piece of muslin, cheesecloth (or a lint-free glass cloth like I used) by putting it into a pan/heatproof bowl and covering it completely with boiling water from a kettle
  • Using tongs, remove the cloth from the water and spread it over a metal colander
  • If you plan on using the whey, put the colander into a large mixing bowl so that all the liquid can be collected
  • Put the milk into a heavy-bottomed pan and heat to boiling stirring regularly to prevent it burning
  • When it begins to bubble, add the yoghurt and vinegar turn off the heat and stir. The curds should separate from the whey
  • Set aside until cool enough to handle
  • Pour the contents of the saucepan into the cloth covered colander
  • Remove the colander from the mixing bowl, put the colander into the kitchen sink and carefully rinse the curds
  • Sprinkle evenly with salt
  • Take up the corners of the cloth into your hands and twist & squeeze as much of the liquid out as possible
  • Form the cloth into a block shape
  • (I put the cloth into a DIY 'mould', a plastic container that some mushrooms came in that I punched holes in the bottom of)
  • Weigh it down with something heavy (I put a jar of dried split peas into an identical mushroom container and popped that on top)
  • Put the paneer on to an under-plate and refrigerate with the weight still on top for about half an hour
  • The paneer is ready to cut into cubes to be used or can be removed from the cloth, covered in cling film/saran wrap and left in the fridge for up to 5 days
Keyword cheese,, paneer