14/06/2016 11:02 BST | Updated 15/06/2017 06:12 BST

Refined Sugar Free Elderflower Cordial


There are a fewer things that epitomise Spring turning to Summer for me than the smell of elderflower in the air. I've been slightly obsessed by this fabulous hedgerow for years and they are back in our parks RIGHT NOW!

After lots of experimentation I've honed this recipe for cordial using local honey instead of sugar as the sweetener. It makes for a lovely, refreshing drink and traditional cordial made with sugar is far too sweet for me nowadays. I took my eldest out for a little picking adventure the other day and we had a great time making a new batch.

Why not give it a go if you're after an activity with the kids?


Ingredients for a 750ml bottle

Carrier bag full of elderflower heads

100ml good quality honey

3l cold water

Large orange sliced into six (or two lemons if you aren't keen on orange)

Large lemon sliced into six

A clean, sterilised bottle


- you are looking for large butter coloured sweet smelling elderflower heads, and will need to pick a supermarket carrier bag sized full

- place your elderflowers in a large saucepan with the other ingredients, then pour the water over the top

- bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to medium and cook with the lid resting on top of the pan for 30 minutes

- drain with a sieve and continue cooking just the liquid on a high heat for 30-45 minutes until it has reduced down to 750ml

- allow to cool then strain through a sieve one more time

- pour into your bottle and keep in the fridge