Elderflower Cordial

Freshly Picked Elderflowers

The Elderflower trees are in full bloom around The Sugarloaf Mountain right now, so you’ve just to try this recipe from The River Cottage Cookbook.!

Quick, simple and best of all free, Hugh says this makes one of the most refreshing drinks known to man!


You will need 20-30 freshly picked heads of Elderflower,  Zest of 2 Lemons and 1 Orange, 200ml or freshly squeezed lemon juice and up to 1.5kg Caster Sugar.

Scalded Flowers
You will also need some  basic equipment, a large bowl, measuring jug, grater/zester, a wooden spoon and a kettle and a pot! It will keep for 3 weeks in fridge or you can sterilise and use tartaric acid as a preservative… but we kinda like the fact that it is fresh, floral and short seasoned!

Stirring the Liquor

Shake off any insects and place the flowers in the bowl with the zest, and pour over enough just boiled water to cover them completely. Cover the bowl and allow to stand for 4 hours, or overnight, untill cold. Left to stand overnight

Strain the liquid through muslin or another clean cloth into a measuring jug or graded saucepan.  To every 500ml liquid, add 350g Sugar and 50ml lemon Juice.

Heat gently to dissolve the sugar, stirring occaisionally and bring to a gentle simmer. Once simmering, move your saucepan half off the hotplate and this will concentrate the scum on one side, this will allow for easier skimming off of any scum.  Allow to cool, then strain again and bottle it. Keep chilled for up to 3 weeks.

To serve, dilute to taste with ice-cold or sparkling water- at least 5:1 water to cordial! Yumm!


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