Wild chamomile, Matricaria discoidea, has a wonderful fragrant aroma that makes for great cocktails. Learn more about this edible weed here. One simple way to incorporate the flavor into cocktails is by infusing a simple syrup with the flowers and leaves of the weed. Not only is this syrup fantastic in cocktails, such as The Schoolyard, but it's also lovely in lemonade, ice tea, drizzled over ice cream (or made into ice cream or gelato), cakes, tarts, etc. Below recipe is for about 1 cup of simple syrup.
- 1 cup washed pineapple weed flowers and tops of leaves: Flowers can be removed from the weed using scissors, some of the top leaves around the flowers are okay, but you want to make sure it's mostly flowers.
- 1 cup sugar*
- 1 cup water
Combine sugar, water, and pineapple weed in a small heavy saucepan.
Bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Let the syrup cool completely, then squeeze as much juice as possible from flowers, pour through cheesecloth into a jar or resealable container. Simple syrup will last 1 month refrigerated.
*You can also make a 2:1 (sugar: water) simple syrup that will last up to 6 months refrigerated. This 2:1 syrup is sweeter than most, so you will need to add less to recipes.