Since I’ve lived in the UK I’ve told myself every. single. year. that I’m going to make elderflower cordial because elderflower grow like weeds here, AND because its so damned delicious! Well this year was my year! I FINALLY stopped procrastinating and did it, and OMG is it easy! Bottles of elderflower go for around £3.15 for 500ml at the shops, this recipe cost me around that amount but for three whole litres (6 times as much), BARRRRGAIN!
The most difficult part of this whole recipe was finding the citric acid. I’ve read that some chemists sell it, but turns out I found it at a corner store. If you’re having a lot of trouble then try amazon or eBay, because, let’s be honest, they have everything. The name sounds scary (acid doesn’t ever sound like it will be tasty) but fear not, its a naturally occurring acid that happens in, yup you guessed it, citrus. It’s also what is used to coat the outside of sour lollies, go ahead try it, it will make your face pucker up like an 80s scrunchie.
I made 3L of this liquid gold, so this is a double recipe; but it could easily be halved if you’re not sure if you love it or not (you will tho).
You will need:
- 100g citric acid
- 3 unwaxed oranges
- 6 unwaxed lemons
- 60 elderflower heads
- 3 L of filtered water
- 1.8 kg caster sugar
In case you don’t know what elderflower looks like, they’re tiny bunches of white flowers that grow wild in most parks (and even on the side of the roads) the UK, they look like this:
It only took me about 10 minutes to get the amount of elderflowers I needed from the park, I just went all Edward Scissor-Hands and got chopping. Give them a gentle rinse back at home to make sure there are no bugs.
- Boil the water and the sugar together, when it reaches boiling point take it off the heat and add the citric acid.
- Whilst the mix is cooling remove as many of the green stems from the elderflower heads as you can be bothered to. I’m not entirely sure this makes much difference but I had the feeling if I didn’t do it then the cordial might taste grassy.
- Slice the lemons and oranges and once the sugar water is cool enough to dip your finger in add the slices and the flowers in and give it all a good stir.
- Cover the pot and leave to sit for 24 hours.
- Strain the liquid through muslin fabric to get rid of any flowers etc and put into sealed sterilised glass bottles, keep in the fridge or if you’re feeling generous give some away as gifts. 🙂