4 Simple Ingredients and you have elderflower champagne, what’s not to like.
Elderflower Champagne and Cordial.
I love nothing more than creating tasty things that I either find or grow in my garden. My elderflower champagne recipe is a triumph as far as that is concerned!
We are fortunate enough to have close on a dozen elder ‘trees’ in our garden. This time of year is the perfect time to turn them into a lightly fizzy, lightly alcoholic and gloriously refreshing summers afternoon or evening treat.
This elderflower champagne recipe uses no fancy brewing kit, just stuff you should have lying around the house. Either that or you can buy it from a supermarket or DIY store for next to no money.
In fact, this recipe involves just 4 simple ingredients, there should be enough natural yeast in the elderflower to get the fermentation happening.
Wild ingredients hold some special place in my heart. I have no idea where they come from and they take no effort to look after.
Given the amount of work that goes into our cultivated crops these things really are Mother Natures marvels.
I wish I was better at using them though. There can be no better feeling than heading into your garden or a local park and coming home with some beautiful ingredients to turn into something tasty.
What Does Elderflower Taste Like?
If you have never tried elderflower you are in for a treat. I have added a simple elderflower cordial recipe too for those of you who want something a little simpler to try out the flavour.
The flavour of elderflower is completely unique. For me right up there with strawberries as the very essence of early summer flavours. Which is why this elderflower panna cotta with strawberries works so well!
They are unmistakably floral and remind me in many ways of Floral Gums. A hard jelly type sweet that was a perennial favourite of mine as a child. They are still a favourite of my wifes today.
The elderflower bush or tree is simple to identify by the small 3-5mm diameter flowers bunched in 10-25cm bunches. Don’t be afraid to get your nose in there for a special treat, the sweet floral aroma is heavenly.
I usually make this recipe in massive quantities but have scaled it down and it works beautifully.
So either make a manageable portion or scale it up and go wild and crazy.
The light alcohol content of between 1 and 2% will not leave you with a stonking hangover or crawling around the garden on all fours.
Try to harvest and make your Elderflower Champagne recipe in the morning. I always find that the aromas and flavours are greatly intensified if they have not been baked by the summer sun all day!
This is a rare post that contains tow recipes for you. An Elderflower cordial recipe joins the Elderflower champagne recipe.
As you can see from the two recipes below there is no difference in the ingredients between elderflower cordial and champagne. Only the ratios differ and of course the fact that elderflower cordial is not fermented.
Elderflower has a strong association with ‘Victorian’ Britain. However, it is an ancient idea dating back to Roman times and likely before that.
Elderflower grows throughout Europe, North East Africa and Western. It typically blooms between May and June. So sorry US readers you may have to skip this one, but I would love to hear if it is popular out there.
- 5 L Water
- 12 Elderflower Heads, Large
- 700 g Sugar
- 3 Lemons, Juice and Zest
- Harvest your Elderflower: You are looking for large clean heads between 15-20cm in diameter and sort through to remove any bugs or other debris
- Heat 2 litres of water to just below boiling point and pour into a large steralised bucket and add the sugar
- Stir until the Sugar has disolved
- Add 3 litres of cold water
- Add the juice and yest of 3 lemons and stir
- Finally add the Elderflower
- Cover with a muslin cloth firmly secured to prevent any creepy crawlies invading and leave to sit for 3 days, if after 3 days you have no sign of bubble or fermentation then add 7g of champagne or wine yeast (this should be readily available in health food stores
- Leave for a further 3 days and then strain through a steralised muslin cloth and allow to sit for a couple of hours to allow it to settle
- Siphon off into bottles of your choice, ensuring that you release the pressure of the fermentation every 2-3 days to prevent any exploding bottles
- After 2 weeks your champagne will be ready to drink!
This recipe scales wonderfully, I made a 30 litre batch and simply multiplied the ingredients by 6!
Calorific value relates to the full recipe.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 2 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 1455Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 178mgCarbohydrates: 377gFiber: 4gSugar: 367gProtein: 2g
- 2.5 kg Sugar
- 25 Elderflower Heads, Large
- 6 Lemons, Juice and Zest
- 1.5 L Water
- Add 1.5 litres of water in a large pan with the sugar and heat without boiling until the sugar has completely dissolved
- Then bring the syrup to the boil and then take off the heat
- Add the Juice and Zest of the Lemons and the Elderflower heads to the liquid and allow to steep for 24 hours
- Strain the resulting syrup through a steralised muslin cloth and decant into a bottle
Simply dilute the syrup to taste and it will keep in the fridge for 2-3 weeks although it rarely lasts that long. I love to serve elderflower cordial with slices of cucumber for extra freshness!
Calorific Value refers to the full recipe.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 1 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 9949Total Fat: 2gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 240mgCarbohydrates: 2578gFiber: 14gSugar: 2536gProtein: 6g