Elderflower Cordial

I love elderflowers. I love the creamy white floatiness of the flowers, their incredible scent and most of all I love the flavour. I’ve made a few batches of cordial this year so it was time to try this one.

I believe the best time to collect the elderflowers is first thing in the morning on a dry, sunny day. I know when I collected the flowers for my first batch the scent hit me before I got close to the tree. Pick the freshest looking heads.

I select trees away from traffic and only take from above “dog height” for obvious reasons. I also don’t collect too many flowers from individual trees.

2 1/2 kg sugar
2 unwaxed lemons
25 fresh elderflower heads
85 gms citric acid
  1. In a very large pan gently dissolve the sugar in 1.5 litres of water. Do not allow to boil
  2. Remove zest from lemons and cut the fruit into rounds. I removed the pith but you don’t have to
  3. Once the sugar has dissolved, bring to the boil then remove from the heat. Add lemons, next & citric acid.
  4. Gently swish elderflower heads in a bowl of cold water, shake off excess water and add to pan. The flowerheads will turn brown due to the hot water, this is nothing to worry about.
  5. Cover and allow to infuse for 24 hours
  6. Strain liquid through a cheesecloth, I used a double thickness.
  7. Then either pour into sterilised bottles or freeze in plastic containers.

Bottled cordial should last in the fridge for up to 6 weeks. It lasts longer as a cordial and because of the high sugar content you can simply scoop out the amount you need before topping up with water etc.