Makes 1 pint of concentrate:

  • 6-8 elderflower heads. You can add slightly more if you want it stronger.
  • 450 g sugar
  • 1 Lemon zested and sliced
  • 2 tsp citric acid
  • 1 pint water
  1. Bring the sugar and water to boil and stir until sugar is dissolved.
  2. Turn off the heat and put the elderflower heads, with as little stalk as possible, into the solution. You want the water just boiling to get rid of any impurities.
  3. Zest the lemon and then slice. Put both zest and slices into the sugar solution.
  4. Add the citric acid.
  5. Cover and leave for 24 hours.
  6. Strain into sterilised bottles.
  7. Ready to serve now, dilute to taste.

TIP 1 Citric acid helps to preserve. You can leave this out if you wish as the lemon also acts as a preservative – it depends on how fast you are planning on drinking it!

TIP 2 To drink, instead of adding water, add chilled sparkling mineral water & white wine to taste.

TIP 3 Make sure the elderflowers are not in a field that has recently been sprayed, that they are above dog leg height and away from traffic fumes! Elder is very genetically diverse, so pick only flowers from a sweet smelling bush.

TIP 4 If you wish the cordial to last longer without fermentation, boil the elderflowers for 15 minutes. This will help to kill the natural yeast and will stop it fermenting.

TIP 5 You can buy sterilising solution, citric acid, sugar and bottles from your local homebrew supplier. Dried elderflowers can also be bought if you want to make this out of season.