Two wings lift a person up from earthy concerns: simplicity and purity. Simplicity should be in intention, purity in feelings. Simplicity reaches out after God, purity catches hold and tastes. ~ Thomas A’Kempis

Monday, 13 November 2017

Elderflower Cordial

Hi everyone,
I'm feeling very happy with myself :)
About 3 - 4 years ago a friend gifted us with some Elderberry plants...which mostly looked like sticks with a few straggly roots hanging off them. However I was very excited and dreamed of great arm fulls of elderberries that I would freeze or dry to use for cold/flu remedies. Up until this year we haven't ever had many flowers on them and last year the birds got all the berries that managed to form on the few that did flower..sigh.... but not to be discouraged, this year voila !!! masses of flowers !!! :)

So I started googling 'Elderberry Cordial' and ended up one evening watching endless videos on you tube about how to make it (which was fun). I'll attach a couple of them at the end of this post, that I concocted a recipe from, using a bit of both of their recipes. The end result was fantastic and very unlike anything I have had before. A man on one video described this cordial as the taste of an English Summer in a glass :)
Well I have never experienced an English summer, but it may well sum up a New Zealand summer too. I like to serve it with Soda Water, mint or lemon balm leaves and ice. Note: Tonic Water is nicer, it has a little bite to it.
Here is a link to the medicinal benefits of Elder flowers :

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Here's some pictures from the delicious Elder flower Cordial making day..and my two guinea pig grandies (Lily and Kora) who tested it for me). They also squeezed some blood oranges into theirs, which turned the water a pale pink. I think they had more fun being messy, than actually trying the cordial :)

E L D E R  F L O W E R   C O R D I A L

*Pick a bucket full of open Elder flower blooms  (I had about x15)
1 - 1.5 Kilos of Sugar
3 large oranges
3 Lemons
60 grams Citric Acid
2.5 Litres of Water

1. Grate the zest off one orange and one lemon. Set aside.
2. Wash and slice the oranges and lemons, and place them in a large bowl with the flowers, which have been pulled from the stems. Sprinkle over the zest. 
3. Bring the water to a boil, add the sugar. Stir to dissolve, then bring to a boil. Boil for a couple of minutes.
4. Pour this syrup slowly over the flowers, citrus slices & zest in the bowl, and leave to soak for 1 - 2 days, stirring occasionally (I only left it for a few hours, as the flavour was strong enough for my liking).
5. Strain through a sieve/muslin lined and repeat if necessary. Pour the warm cordial into bottles, which have been sterilized in the oven at 100 C for 30 minutes. Remember warm cordial into warm bottles. If the bottles have cooled off they may crack.
*This recipe makes 2.5 litres of delicious cordial, which is quite potent. I only use about 2 T at the bottom of a glass and top up with ice, soda/tonic water and mint leaves.

Bye for now xox 


  1. Good for you! You should feel accomplished. Your guinea pigs are so adorable, too. Do the flowers have the same medicinal effect as the berries? I've always wanted to try it, but never have I found a bush.
    Blessings from Harvest Lane Cottage,

  2. Hi Laura, Thanks for stopping by :) Here is a link to the medicinal benefits of Elder flowers (good reading):

  3. Just to say your recipe matches the one I use, and so I can assure you from experience that yes, it does taste of an English summer!

    1. Thanks for commenting Helen :) It's good to know that statement is accurate too.
      Blessings ~ Linda


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