Capture the taste of summer with my Elderflower Liqueur recipe. Freshly picked elderflowers, vodka & lemon work their magic – et voila homemade St Germain!
I love elderflowers, their tiny delicate blossoms exuding a sweet intoxicating scent which heralds the beginning of summer. I find myself looking forward to the short flowering season for elderflowers and I really enjoy picking and preserving them to have all year round.
Yesterday was glorious, the perfect day for picking the elderflowers I’d been eyeing up for the last couple of weeks. Elderflowers picked, scissors at the ready, a lemon or two, a clean Le Parfait jar and a big bottle of vodka, simples !
I like to make Elderflower Liqueur by adding the sugar in syrup form at the straining stage. You can add the sugar at the initial flower and vodka stage but I find extracting all the flavour from the perfumed elderflowers before adding sugar tends to deliver a purer taste. Also, it’s easier to gauge a sense of the finished product and how sweet you might like it to be if you add sugar to taste after the elderflowers have worked their magic.
We love Elderflower Liqueur with sparkling water and a slice of lemon as the perfect summer drink. For a special treat, why not try some with champagne – now that really is a treat.
Time is of the essence so I’ll stop extolling the virtues of elderflowers and get to the recipe. Here it is in handy printable form.
- 20 large elderflower heads
- 1 litre (1 US quart) of vodka
- Zest of 1 large lemon
- 1 x 1 litre (1 US quart) sterilised Le Parfait jar, Kilner jar, Mason jar or similar
- 100 g (½ cup) sugar
- 100 ml (⅓ cup plus 2 tablespoons) water
- Sterilised bottles
- Pick your elderflowers on a sunny day just before noon for the best scent. Discard any with brown flowers.
- Give each flower head a good shake to get rid of any creepy crawlies, although you will strain them out later.
- Snip the tiny flower heads off the thick stalks, leaving only the thin stalks attached to the flowers.
- Place in the sterilised jar, top with the lemon zest and pour the vodka in until it completely covers the lemon zest right to the limit of the jar. (This should prevent the flowers from turning brown but don't worry as an odd few will only result in a darker liqueur and it won't ruin the taste)
- Place in a cool, dark place for two to four weeks.
- Make a sugar syrup by gently heating the sugar with the water until the sugar has dissolved. Allow to cool before using.
- Strain the elderflower, lemon and vodka liquid through a muslin cloth into a bowl.
- Add half the sugar syrup and taste for sweetness before adding the remaining syrup if required. I use all of the syrup and I find it isn't overly sweet.
- Decant into clean sterilised bottles and leave for for two months in a cool dark place to mature. (If you really can't wait, it is okay for drinking now but it's worth waiting the two months)
- Keeps for years but I'm sure it won't be on your pantry shelf that long!
Why not make extra and give a bottle as a gift ?
Pin my Elderflower Liqueur Recipe for later:
I’m entering my Elderflower Liqueur Recipe into a few challenges this month:
- Credit Crunch Munch created by Camilla from Fab Food 4 All & Helen over at Fuss Free Flavours & hosted this month by Lisa over at Lovely Appetite.
- The Teatime Treats Challenge hosted by Karen over at Lavender & Lovage and Janie at The Hedgecombers, hosted this month by Karen.
- Simple And In Season hosted by Katie over at Feeding Boys.
And linking to: