50 elderflower heads, with fully open florets,
preferably picked on a sunny morning
2 lemons: juice & zest
5 tsp of citric acid (ask at your chemist)
Use another lemon, if you can’t get it.
1kg of sugar
3 litres of boiling water
1. Shake and rinse the elderflowers to remove any insects and cut off their main stalks
2. Put all the solid ingredients in a large bowl and pour over the boiling water
3. Stir well and cover. Put it somewhere cool and stir it occasionally over 2 days
4. Then strain and seal the cordial in clean bottles.
It lasts a few weeks in the fridge or a year in the freezer (leave an air-space at the top of the bottle) I find plastic 1 pint milk-bottles good. Or you can preserve it without freezing by stirring in 3 crushed Campden tablets before bottling, but this isn’t suitable if sulphur dioxide makes you asthmatic like me.
Dilute the elderflower cordial to taste.
Serve with ice and a slice of lemon or a sprig of mint or some borage flowers.
Try it in a vinaigrette or with sorbets, ice-cream or stewed fruit.