To me Elderflowers represent early English summers. We have a few Elders in our hedges and I treasure their crop of flowers. The tree itself does little for me; it has a tendency to look like a tatty intruder, a weed of the tree world. Their existence in our garden is saved for the flowers and subsequent cordial.
I love Elderflower cordial mixed with sparkling water it’s a refreshing aromatic summer drink. I’m using Mary Berry’s recipe as she uses campden tablets, which helps extend the cordials shelf life.
Cut 25-30 Elderflower heads, they need to be fresh open flowers (with no brown bits), if shaken the flowers should stay firm and not fall on your feet like confetti.
These are added to a slightly cooled mixture of water and caster sugar that has been brought to the boil to dissolve the sugar. To this I add finely sliced lemons, citric acid and campden tablets. Leave in a large bowl over night, then, pour through muslin to remove all the flower heads and lemons.
Bottle up the cordial and store in the Fridge. It should last for 2-3 months.
Elderflower cordial Ingredients:
25-30 Elderflower heads
1.5 kg of caster sugar
1.5 litres of water
2 lemons finely sliced
50g citric acid
2 x campden tablets
Elderflower cordial also makes a cracking cocktail which I can highly recommend.
Fresh Mint Sprigs and/or Cucumber slices
Pour a dash of Elderflower cordial and 20ml of gin into a glass and simply fill with cold Prosecco. Then decorate with a sprig of fresh mint or slice of cucumber if you wish. Cheers!