Elderflower last chances

Wednesday, June 10, 2020


Hello everyone, is it summer yet? We were nearly there then winter came back with a vengeance but the forecast looks cautiously optimistic for the temperatures to climb in the next week or two. It's last chance saloon this week to gather elderflowers if you're after making anything. They don't last long it seems. If you're new to foraging then maybe this is the year to start. We've made elderflower champagne, elderflower gin and elderflower cordial (though it was a disaster and I've had to re-boil and re-bottle due to following some advice I really thought didn't make sense at the time) but that's another rant.
With elderflowers you have to be really careful you are picking the right thing. Do not get confused with other white umbelliferous white flowers in the verge - they may be poisonous or even deadly!! It's vital to have briefed yourself on exactly what you are looking for. So if in doubt, consult a trusted source. 
The good thing about elderflowers is that they can be in plentiful supply, we have found a hedge which has hundreds if not thousands so even after we've picked some from several bushes there is no sign of missing flowers. Don't take too many from any one plant.



The elderflower gin couldn't be simpler. Fork off the flowers, add a spoonful or two of sugar and top up with gin. Shake. Leave 24 or 48 hours and pass through a muslin. My first sample of it smelled of elderflower but tasted reminiscent of fusty flannel but a week or two later and it's miraculously turned into a delightful tipple. Might make another batch while I can!
Have you gathered your elderflowers yet? Or do you have a recipe to recommend?

Take care,
Sophie

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2 comments

  1. We did pick some on a walk but then forgot about them so they went manky in a bag! Shame!

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  2. I love elder flower gin - it never lasts long when I make it but I missed the flowers this year. They're such pretty flowers, so delicate. I'm sure I happened across an elder flower turkish delight somewhere and thought it might be rather lovely. Next year maybe...?
    xx

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