In the misty summer evenings, when often we are grateful enough to experience heavy rain and watch it drizzle, the elderflower releases its gentle fragrance.
Magical, I say.
I had to wait for a long time to pick my elderflowers, as this year, we experienced so much rain. what seemed like the perfect flower in bloom, turned out to be tiny little buds that hadn’t reached their full potential. i drove around the green areas of the forest and fields many times but up until las week, i was out of luck. but then suddenly, on another long and rainy day, I was lucky enough to find three huge trees that lent their ‘fruit’ so kindly.
the secret to making this amazing drink is to put in loads of love and to share it with the people you treasure. here’s the recipe I used this year:
- 8–10 large elderflowers (fresh and white)
- 500 g of brown sugar
- 4 lemons (3 unpeeled and one peeled, cut in thin slices)
- the juice of 1 lemon
- 10 L of water ( I used still water because the drink will become fizzy on its own)
the jar I used is a 5L jar, which I covered as soon as i finished making a total of 15L for me and my friends.
the way to make this delicious drink is to:
- first clean the flowers by making sure that all bugs and tiny insects are no longer stuck around the petals or underneath them
- melt the 500 g of brown sugar in 1 L of the total water you will use, over the stove until the sugar is incorporated (keep mixing and do not overheat the water, it needs to stay lukewarm)
- cut 3-4 lemons into thin slices and peel one lemon which you will also cut up and add to the unpeeled ones for extra taste
- squeeze the juice of 1 lemon into a little bowl and leave it aside
- pour 4L water into your 5 L jar and make sure you leave room for the extra L that you melted the sugar in
- add the lemons and the lemon juice, gently add in the L of water with melted sugar and then, press in about 10 elderflowers until everything is floating on the surface into a delicious potion of divine fragrance and zest
- cover your jar with a cloth so that some air can still get in
- mix every 24 hours and allow 3-4 days of fermentation
known since the time of the druids, some of the benefits of elderflower, whether used as the pressed fizzy version, tea, wine or syrup, include:
- anti-inflammatory properties (helps with swelling)
- natural cold or flu reliever (super good for soar throats)
- a well known antioxidant, rich in nutrients such as Vit.C.
- helps with the skin, making it clearer and more radiant
- used as fragrance in some perfumes
I remember making this drink with my grandmother as a child. the smell has been a trigger of such value in remembering the precious moments of when ‘nothing really mattered’. childhood is such a gift. the memory will always stay with me as I navigate life, creating beauty and being LOVE.
this is a picture taken by my dear friend Ana. I needed more pictures for the blog and since I had already given her a jar of the ‘summer wine’, she gave it a vintage twist, by adding a cool filter and surprising me with these cute little pink flowers that were gathered from her own special garden. having friends that love you is one of the greatest treasures in life.
Sending love as always and I hope you give this drink a try.