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Author Topic: Elder  (Read 178 times)

squirrel

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Elder
« on: November 29, 2013, 12:13:28 PM »

I am just bottling my elderflower wine. this year I made two types, both from Marguerite Patten's 500 recipes for homemade wine and drinks
 The following is the basic recipe but the one I am bottling had a thumb sized piece of sliced ginger root and the juice of a lemon.

I am not sure how much will make in into bottles as the tasting sessions have included visiting friends over the past few days. I hope to get what's left into bottles today, but it really is delicious even at this early stage.

Elderflower Wine

Grated rind of one lemon
1 pint of elderflowers
8 pints of boiling water

To each gallon of juice add:
3 lbs sugar
Juice of one lemon
Half an ounce of yeast

1) Put lemon rind with the elderflowers
2) Pour over boiling water
3) Allow to stand for 4 days, stirring from time to time
4) Strain through muslin
5) Measure the amount of juice and stir in sugar, lemon juice and yeast
6) Keep in a warm room 65-75F to ferment
7) When you are sure all the bubbling has ceased, stir the wine
8) Allow to settle for 3 days
9) Strain again carefully
10) Put in a corked container (not bottles)
11) After several months maturing, put into bottles
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Big Gee

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Re: Elder
« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2013, 12:26:11 PM »

Thanks squirrel - I've been looking for a good Elder-flower wine recipe. I could have looked something up on the web - but never seem to remember to search for it!  ::)
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squirrel

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Re: Elder
« Reply #2 on: November 30, 2013, 12:20:59 AM »

The first time I made this BG I just threw the heads into the mix as I cut them free from the thick stalk holding the umbel together. It was not good as it made the wine dry and bitter.

This year I did a few things differently

1 - I gathered the flowers in the morning getting to them before too many bees had taken any pollen or nectar

2 - I cut the individual flowers from the stems

3 - I added  1 and half times the flowers.

4 - I added an extra tablespoon of sugar to each demijohn at the first two wracking's as I wanted a slightly sweeter wine.

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Big Gee

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Re: Elder
« Reply #3 on: November 30, 2013, 12:34:09 AM »

Thanks squirrel! I'm going to print that off for safe keeping!

Personally, I'm not a dry wine fan - so your recipe tweak should suit me fine!

Did you find that picking the flowers very early made a big difference? That's often quoted by people who make wine. It makes sense - but I often wonder if the difference is that great.
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squirrel

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Re: Elder
« Reply #4 on: November 30, 2013, 10:20:01 AM »

Yes I did BG. Not only is there a difference to the fragrance but also to the flavour. I got my flowers from the same place each year so I know they are the same variety growing in the same soil. I had read that the best flowers are picked early morning before being hit by the sun and also to watch the bushes to try and pick the ones that have just opened as even small amounts of darkened flowers can add to the bitterness of the wine.

Having ignored this advice the first year and following it the second I would say there has been a marked improvement this year.

Also I believe, but have no proof, that once a bee has visited a flower it has removed many of the quality products from that flower that we want in our wine, jams or jellies.
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Big Gee

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Re: Elder
« Reply #5 on: November 30, 2013, 03:25:20 PM »

That's very interesting. I think it's called "fine tuning" through experience. Thanks for sharing it squirrel!  ThU:-)
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rugbypost

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Re: Elder
« Reply #6 on: November 30, 2013, 08:48:07 PM »

I can remember the old women of the village collecting Elder flower they all had aprons on and then laying it out on Hessian sacks, had many a near miss with a right hand for not behaving.  RedFaced:-(
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squirrel

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Re: Elder
« Reply #7 on: November 30, 2013, 09:50:19 PM »

Phew! I think I must have had a month of madness when I did the start of the wine making.

Perhaps we shall have to have a big party to help me use it all up.

So far I still have to clear and bottle

4 gal Gooseberry
4 gal Rhubarb
3 gal Apple
2 gal cider
2 gal white wine kit

not to mention several litres of fruit spirits and the wine already in bottles.


I reckon I will have to give the next couple of wine making years a miss or brush up on my drinking techniques.  lol(1)
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