elderflower honey

It’s elderflower season in England and we’ve begun with the simplest recipe, elderflower honey. We made this for the first time last year, and the honey proved to be such a great remedy when we were suffering from a terrible cough in the winter. I’m doubling the recipe this year, just in case.

elderflower honey © elisa rathje 2011

The children like to make this by themselves, so they went out foraging with a friend, carrying a trug. Pick the elderflowers as they are just beginning to bloom, and bring them straight home. Fill a jar three quarters full with honey; we used our local raw honey. Shake any insects off of the flowers, and plunge the umbels in. I use four or five per jar.

elderflower honey © elisa rathje 2011

Top up the jar once you see how much room the blossoms need, and close it up tight.

elderflower honey © elisa rathje 2011

Turn the jar once or twice a day, for about a month, to help the flowers infuse. Strain out the blossoms. I’d like to decant the elderflower honey into little flip-top bottles again to make it easy to pour the honey when we need it. Oh, it’s nice to have these seasonal recipes become familiar, annual affairs. Now we’re brewing elderflower champagne, and the scent is heavenly.

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