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Elderflower Champagne


Whole elderflower heads steeped in acidulated sugared water. Strained and tightly bottled for some weeks, natural yeast on the flowers evolves carbon dioxide gas, producing a mildly (c3%) alcoholic, effervescent drink.

Original Receipt in 'Derby Daily Telegraph' - Saturday 23 June 1934

Wine Recipes
Several more readers have responded the "SOS" for a recipe for elderflower wine (the request was almost as urgent as to be called an S O S, I think, for the elder is in full bloom and there is no time to be lost). Mrs. F. M. Holdridge, of Golemanstreet, Harvey-road, Derby, sends a recipe for "Elderflower Champagne," which is different and (she claims) easier to make than the one I published from another reader. is: Ingredients: 2 large heads elderflowers in full bloom, gallon of cold water, 1 large lemon, 1 ½ lb. of loaf sugar, 2 tablespoons white vinegar. Method: Squeeze tlie juice out of the lemon, cut rind in four, put this with the elderflowers, sugar and vinegar in large jug or basin, pour on the cold water and leave to steep for 24 hours. Strain off and bottle (in screw-top bottles if possible), and keep at least three or four weeks before using. Mrs. L. Jephson, of The Firs, Allestree, and Mrs. Maddocks, of St. Giles's-road, Derby, have forwarded similar recipes, but each says keep for two weeks (or least two weeks) instead of stipulating three.

In the celebrated 'Elderflower Champagne' case of Tattinger v. Allber (1992) it was held, on appeal, that the name 'Champagne' ought not to be used for this beverage as it improperly passes-off the product as being from the French wine region. Commercial versions of the drink are now usually sold as 'sparkling elderflower', but it remains perfectly legal to produce a 'Champagne' at home, where the maker is the consumer and knows perfectly well where the product came from.

See: Champagne

Image: Anne Burgess

See also:
Elderflower Cordial,
Elderberry Wine

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