elderflower cordial

June 29, 2009 at 7:22 am 4 comments

This year is the first time I’ve made use of the elderflower heads from the trees that edge our allotment.  It was easy to make and tasted delicious.  Sadly no photos because we glugged it all before the camera arrived, including the bottles in the freezer!  Roll on August when the elderberries will be out.

If you’re looking for an elderflower cordial recipe you’ll soon find that no two are the same.  I adapted the recipe in the River Cottage Handbook: Preserves to produce about 4 litres of cordial.

makes about 4 litres
50 elderflower heads
Finely grated zest of 6 unwaxed lemons and 2 oranges plus their juice
2kg sugar
2 heaped tsp citric acid (optional)
3 litres of boiling water

  • Inspect the heads carefully and remove any insects (don’t wash them).
  • Place in flower heads and all zest in a large bowl and pour over boiling water.  Cover and leave overnight to infuse.
  • Strain through a piece of muslin and pour into a saucepan.
  • Add the sugar, lemon and orange juice and citric acid (if using)
  • Heat gently to dissolve sugar then simmer for a couple of minutes
  • Pour hot syrup into sterilised bottles.

The cordial will keep for several weeks (or longer if you’ve included citric acid).  Pour into plastic bottles and freeze if you really want to make it last.

Entry filed under: allotment tales, in the kitchen. Tags: , , .

treat your neighbour our sheds

4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Grazing Kate  |  June 14, 2011 at 8:35 pm

    I have linked to this page from my own adventures with elderflowers – I hope you don’t mind! Please let me know if you do and I shall remove the link immediately. Thanks, Kate

  • 2. Nip it in the bud  |  June 14, 2011 at 9:00 pm

    that’s fine Kate. Glad your cordial turned out well. And champagne too you brave girl you (my cats would never forgive exploding bottles!)

  • 3. sampling Five Valleys fruit cordials | Nip it in the bud  |  September 7, 2013 at 10:30 pm

    […] will depend upon donated fruit from kindly allotment neighbours or keeping an eye out for the elderflower blossom.  It will certainly be inspired by my recent tastings of Five Valleys Cordials using herbal blends […]

  • 4. when life gives you lemons… | Nip it in the bud  |  October 10, 2016 at 3:52 pm

    […] cream surprise, gluten free lemon drizzle cake , lemon curd sponge cake, Quinoa tabouleh and Elderflower cordial. Disclaimer: With thanks to Oxo Good Grips who sent us this […]


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6 years ago today I took my last waddle to the allotment to pick green veg for a vitamin packed last supper.  I knew baby was on his way but had a feeling he wasn't going to be quick about it.  It's his birthday in 2 days time and I'm so excited for him, my darling Whopper (he was 10lb 2oz and my bump in this picture is 48"!)
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