• 7 Responses to Elderflower champagne

    1. 24/06/2010 at 11:32 am

      1 gall water, 3lb sugar, 1 pint of closely pressed elder flowers (pick in the morning – only those flowers that are free from pollen drop – v. important and I’m afraid it’s probably too late for this year) with stalks cut off, one half slice of toast. Make a paste of a teaspoon of wine yeast with a teaspoon of sugar and a little water. Wait for about five minutes then spread on a small piece of toast. Cover and leave for 30 minutes in a warm place then cut into four.

      Bring the water to boil in a large pan with the sugar. Stir thoroughly until dissolved. Remove from the pan and add about a teaspoon of finely chopped ginger. Stir.

      Put the flowers in a 1.5 gallon plastic bucket.

      Pour the water/sugar/ginger on to the flowers, cover with a drying up cloth and leave until luke warm. Immerse the yeast covered toast in the bucket. The pieces will rise to the surface. Cover again and leave for about five days in an airing cupboard. Strain and filter. The best bottles to use are the sprung/ceramic stoppered ones that are used for continental beers. Pour into the bottles and close. Release and reseal for 14 days. Then chill at around 4 degrees centigrade. The drink should be ready after another fourteen days. Be careful when opening and pouring!

      • countrydays
        24/06/2010 at 12:04 pm

        Thanks for that – I will let you know how it goes!

    2. Hil Clayton
      24/06/2010 at 4:25 pm

      My friend Christine Blackburn in Wales always makes it like this. You don’t need any yeast because there is naturally occuring yeast already on the flowers. It tastes really good!

      Elderflower champagne

      To make 1 gallon

      4 large heads of elderflowers, picked on a sunny day

      juice and thinly pared rind of 1 lemon

      2tbsp white wine vinegar

      1 1/2 lbs granulated sugar

      Place all the ingredients in a large bowl or container and cover with 8 pints cold water.

      Stir well to dissolve the sugar and cover with a cloth.

      Leave for 24 hours.

      Strain the liquid into sterilized, screw-top bottles.

      Screw the tops on very tightly and leave to fizz before tasting.

      Will store in a cool place for about 3 months.

      • countrydays
        25/06/2010 at 10:08 am

        Dear Hil,
        Thank you! I love the idea of not having to go out and buy yeast – everything in your ingredients list I have at home!
        Rhoda x

        • Hil Clayton
          25/06/2010 at 4:10 pm

          Let me knows how it goes when you try some!


    3. Nadia Mckendry
      25/06/2010 at 5:18 pm

      You can’t go wrong by following the lovely Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall recipe, here’s his link:


      Be sure to let us know how it turns out- Yum

      Regards Nadia x

    4. 02/07/2010 at 1:17 pm

      Very nice information.

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