Preparation time: 40+ min
For 2 liters of elderflower syrup
20 large elderflower heads (if the heads are smaller, use more)
2 l water for soaking the heads
6 organic lemons
2 tbs bicarbonate soda
2 l water for soaking the lemons
300 g coconut sugar
700 g brown sugar
1 tsp citric acid
First, pick the elderflower heads. Elderflower thrives on the forest foothills and river banks, so it won't be too hard to find. On my walks, I am always on the lookout for beautiful bushes and then I visit them again in the spring. When picking the heads, make sure they are fully open and with a nice fragrance, and full of pollen, so it is better not to rinse the heads before soaking them.
Soak the lemons in a solution of water and bicarbonate soda for at least an hour. Even if you use organic lemons, the skin is in most cases still sprayed and bicarbonate soda neutralizes those toxins. After that, wash and scrub the lemons under running water.
Slice clean lemons into rings and remove the bigger, harder stalks of elderflower. Place a layer of elderflower heads in a bigger bowl, then place another layer of lemon rings, and so on. When you use up all the lemons and elderflower heads, add approx. 2 liters of water and weigh them down (I use a plate) to keep the heads underwater. Cover with a lid or cloth and leave it for 48 hours.
After two days, uncover the elderflower lemon mixture and crush them with your hands (you may help yourself with rubber gloves) - press, squeeze and knead to squeeze the juices out of lemons and fragrance from elderflower heads. When you feel that you have sufficiently kneaded the batter, squeeze it well and throw it away. Strain the leftover liquid into a bigger pot, add sugar, citric acid, and bring to a boil. Stir several times to dissolve the sugar. Prepare the glass bottles. Bottles need to be cleaned well, sterilized, and I also recommend you use new caps.
Remove the syrup from the heat just before it starts to boil and transfer it hot to the bottles. Close the bottles well and cover them with a blanket so the syrup can cool down gradually creating a vacuum, which means that the bottles are very well closed and no oxygen can come into the bottles to spoil your syrup.
Elderflower syrup is a refreshing beverage and it is perfect for hot summer days. You can also use it for cocktails and desserts.
Use your imagination and tailor the recipe to your taste. Enjoy creativity and Bon Appetit.