I had another flush of seasonal food excitability about a month ago, and went out to pick a lot of elderflowers. I came back with maybe 100 heads of elderflowers, plus a whole lot of bugs. Two years ago, I made elderflower cordial from this recipe- it was really good, so I made some more- I think I had just over two litres of cordial, which I mostly mix with gin, fizzy water and lemons for a very refreshing drink. I am considering trying to turn some of it into sorbet too.
As well as the cordial, I made three alcoholic drinks:
Gooseberry and elderflower vodka- a few elderflower heads, a punnet of gooseberries, and about 8 tablepoons of sugar, and topped up with vodka. I made this last year, and it was really successful, so I felt it was worth repeating. I am going to leave this to steep for a tear again.
Elderflower liqueur- from the Wild Cocktails book- This had 20 heads of elderflowers, some sugar and vodka. You then cut up two lemons, and use it to help keep the elderflower heads under the vodka. This was left to infuse for a month. The elderflower flavour of this is incredibly intense. I have tried it out in the book’s suggested recipe of an ‘Elder sour’, but found it a bit too sour- I think it needs a touch of sugar syrup so it tastes more balanced- at least for my tastes.
Cherry, elderflower and honey gin- A more improvised recipe- I had used up all my sugar making the cordial, but had some orange blossom honey- I am hopeful the honey flavour will come through too. I crushed the cherries (about a punnet, but left the stones in, as they add to the flavour. Like, the gooseberry vodka, I just added a few heads of elderflowers. This was just topped up with gin, and I will try it over the next few months until I get a strong enough flavour.