Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Elderflower Champagne 2016.



The Elders are now in flower, so time to make some FIZZ.

Take 6 heads of sun-kissed Elder flowers,
the zest and juice of one large Lemon,
two tablespoons of white wine vinegar,
650 gms of sugar,
and 6 ½ litres of water.

                               

Combine all ingredients in clean plastic bucket, stir, and leave covered for 24 hrs.


Strain through muslin, and bottle in strong flip-top 'corona' bottles (see picture 2). Leave for at least 2 weeks before tasting.

N.B. Always open bottles outdoors; they can be very lively. Serve ice cold.




43 comments:

  1. Your photos are always like beautiful paintings.

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  2. Elderflower here is called Sambuco and the frizz made from it is called "the poor people's champagne". I've never made it; I'm scared to pick the wrong flowers, I'm told there is a similar one that is poisonous.
    Greetings Maria x

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    Replies
    1. There is an annual plant called Ground Elder which could be confused, but I'm sue you could tell the difference.

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  3. I was walking around the garden last night and noticed the elderflower just coming out and thought about the wine I once made. I thought I will make some this year. It was wine though not a fizzy drink and pretty potent stuff.

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    1. Was that Elderberry wine, made with the berries? I've never tried making it.

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    2. Flower, made with the flowers to give a whitish wine, beautiful flavour but if you drink too much you end up with one hell of a headache. I have also made elderberry (red) wine but without success.

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    3. Lady Magnon once made some Apple Wine which was spectacular. Unfortunately she couldn't remember how she'd made it, so it remains a mystery.

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    4. Ditto with the elderflower but i think i still have the recipe...somewhere....

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  4. I will try this it sounds straight forward but how much water to add to the other ingredients? Love the photos too!

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    1. I knew I'd left something out. STUPID. I make 6 litres at each go, so I add six and half litres of water. Thank you Rosie.

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    2. Thanks can't wait to try it!

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  5. Lively isn't the word! That stuff is frightening. It has reduced toughened bottles to shreds of plastic! x

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    Replies
    1. It's all part of the fun. Children love it.

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  6. Sounds great - there will be no elderflower heads left after everyone reads this !
    Have read the ingredients, and assume you must add water, but you don't say when, or how much. Those flip top corona bottles are a rarity these days.
    We once made ginger beer which exploded and the bottle tops blew holes in the metal garage doors - I should imagine this is of a similar potency !

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    1. I've now amended my recipe. I add six and a half litres of water. Old age! I do occasionally use Fischer beer bottles, but they have no strength. It needs something bomb proof.

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  7. That takes me back a long time and to one of the most dangerous episodes in my wine and beer making career: a bottle exploded embedding glass in the walls of the storeroom. Checking and clearing the remaining bottles was scary!

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    1. When I was very small I secretly made some cider (apple juice, yeast, sugar), and hid the bottles in the pantry. Of course they all exploded, and I can remember my father carrying the final bottle, very carefully, to the bottom of the garden, where it also exploded a day later.

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  8. I made ginger wine once. That also is busy in its bottle. Kept the ripening wine in my large airing cupboard. Buyers came to view the house. Were busy investigating storage facilities. Opened the airing cupboard. Fortunately the ginger wine had exploded itself out of the bottles just minutes before they did so. They didn't buy the house. I have not made ginger wine since.
    But I was going to have a go at Elderflower wine this year, but I can't remember where the bottles I kept for that purpose are being stored after the building work was done last year. And since I keep forgetting to have a look for them, and since I have lots of other things to do, I think that the Elderflower cordial project will have to wait until next year!

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    1. You need an extra barn for all your cheeses, dried vegs, wines, bottles, etc.

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  9. I've just drunk the last bottle from 2015. The elderflowers are slow in coming out here this year so I am all prepared but just waiting now!
    Arilx

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    1. We too only finished our last bottle a week ago. I've just this minute finished this year's bottling.

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  10. I usually make the cordial but use far more flower heads - it is a lovely refreshing summer drink.

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    1. I keep meaning to make Cordial as well, but I'm just lazy. I'll look at the recipe now!

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  11. I remember my father's only attempt to make some fizz, and when bottled, they were left to mature in a dark cupboard. He had to count the explosions until the last bottle had gone off before it was safe to open the cupboard and clear it all up. Very refreshing.

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    Replies
    1. That sounds about right. If you don't have the correct bottles it's bang bang bang.

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  12. Well Cro, that lull with nothing to do didn't last long, did it !!!!! .... and now you're making Elderflower Champers ..... lovely. What are you cooking for dinner tonight ? XXXX

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    1. Pasta.... well it would be wouldn't it!

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  13. I would love to taste elderflower wine. I've never seen it made here.

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    Replies
    1. Elderflower champagne is really a very refreshing soft drink for summer. There is a tiny bit of alcohol in it, but not much. Don't you have Elder bushes where you are?

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    2. I'm not sure. No one mentions them if we do.

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  14. I had to transplant our elderflower last fall so only one flower head. Hope to make some cordial next year.

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    1. We cant stop the elder growing in the UK and it is regarded as a weed although the flowers look lovely. On any piece of waste ground up springs an elder tree. Transplanting would just never happen; thet are just cut down.

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    2. They're rather like Buddleias (sp?), any crack between paving slabs, and up pops an Elder.

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  15. Sun-kissed? T'would be hard to find here at the moment.

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    Replies
    1. They say one should always pick the flowers after they've had sun on them; it's been a bit tricky here too.

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  16. We've made some very good elder berry wine in the past but my one attempt at champagne failed - no fizz!

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    1. It does occasionally happen, and no-one seems to know quite why. Perseverance!

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  17. Your post has brought back a fine memory of a lunch in Cambridge with a friend. It was the occasion of my first elderflower cordial tasting. Delicious! Just a few years ago, and now I would definitely like another glass.

    Best wishes.

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    1. I can imagine. It's a haunting flavour.

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  18. I make elderflower cordial every year (and freeze half litre plastic bottles of it for year-round drinking) but I've never made 'champagne' so thanks for the idea and recipe. Just need to hunt down some bottles.

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