• Alison Murray

Things to do in the garden during lockdown day 76: make elderflower cordial

It is really worth collecting the wonderfully aromatic elderflowers for a final batch of cordial before they are gone for another year.

I have Sambucus niger porphyrophylla probably 'Black Lace' in my garden which is several steps away from the wild type and with only a few blooms, so I have been off collecting in the hedgerows. I imagine you can make elderflower from the black leaved cultivars too though.

Young elderflowers, newly opened are the most aromatic and make the best cordial. It is always worth shaking the more mature blooms, if their petals fall off they are too far gone and the flavour muted, it's also a good idea to let the insects escape. I leave the elderflowers to soak overnight and jam the freezer full to stretch this delicious cordial beyond the heady days of early summer.

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