Foraging for Elderflower

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Foraging is something I really want to learn more about. I have very limited knowledge of foraging and if ever there was a subject on which solid knowledge was important, this is it. One misguided decision to eat something in the wild could have dire consequences.

One thing I do know how to identify though is Elderflower. We have foraged for some basics with the boys, such as wild garlic, mint, pine needles and nettles in the past. I worry about Elderflower because there are some pretty dangerous plants that could easily be mistaken for it. Cow Parsley, Giant Hogweed and Hemlock all present small white flowers and to a child they could easily be wrongly identified.

Elderflower tree

Elderflower has a very small creamy white flower and serrated leaves, usually in clusters of five.

We have Elderflower growing on the park directly behind our house, so we didn’t have to go far for it. The boys picked it very carefully and collected just enough in a tupperware box to make cordial.

Elderflower

We looked closely at the flowers and discussed the differences between these and the flowers of Hogweed.

Remember too that Elderflower grows on bushes and not from the ground or from a tree.

I had intended to make some cordial with this particular batch of elderflower, as I mentioned earlier. However, we left our loot unattended and daddy put it in some whisky instead! I will let you know what he thinks in about 6 weeks…

Elderflower whisky

Uses

I found some great Elderflower recipes from around the internet to give you some inspiration:

Jelly

Cordial

Gin

I’d love to know how things turn out if you try any of them – let me know in the comments.

13 Comments

  1. Lisa Hoptroff

    Gin? You have my attention 😉 I do love Elderflower but have never dared make my own before. You have inspired me to go foraging in the next few weeks!

    Reply
  2. Notmyyearoff

    I had no idea you could forage for elderflower of all things. I am clueless about foraging but it looks like such a useful skill to have. The only thing I think I’ve ever picked is blue berries and that’s only because it was SO obvious what it was 🙂

    Reply
  3. MissPond

    Oooooh I’ve never foraged for elderflower before, but I love it in gin… Maybe I’ll have to make some of my own in the future 🙂

    Reply
  4. Mini Travellers

    Need to get out foraging and make some elderflower cordial (scratch that – Gin!) love the idea #countrykids

    Reply
  5. Sarah | Boo Roo and Tigger Too

    I can remember going bramble picking with my mam when I was little but I don’t think we ever picked elderflower. I’ll to take the children out to see if we can find some to make some cordial #countrykids

    Reply
  6. Fiona - Coombe Mill

    I’m really interested to read this as I also adore foraging but am nervous of confusing Elderflower. The bush v Tree tip is really handy, I’m sure we do have some locally. Elderflower cordial is my Favorited and Elderflower gin practically has me reaching for my wellies and a Tupperware box right away!

    Thank you for sharing with me on #CountryKids

    Reply
  7. Lynda Appuhamy

    We have tried making elderflower champagne for the first time this year. The foraging was definitely the best part – just starting to drink it now. Adding whisky sounds interesting- a drink with a real kick. #countrykids

    Reply
  8. Elizabeth (Wander Mum)

    Elderflower whiskey…sounds interesting! I love the idea of foraging but think I’d be useless. Such a great thing to do with the kids! #countrykids

    Reply
  9. Heidi

    A local drinks company was looking for volunteers to pick elderflower- I wish I’d volunteered now but I’d be worried that I’d pick the wrong thing!

    #countrykids

    Reply
  10. Merlinda Little (Glimmer of Hope)

    I always wanted to do this but I dont know where to get the elderflower. I am not that good in distinguishing it from the others!

    #countrykids

    Reply
  11. Samantha Free

    We were talking about this the other day as I saw something that looked vaguely like it but didn’t think it was, and like you say lots of things can be confused with it. Excellent identification tips though, thank you! I heard you didn’t need much to make cordial – is that true? I would be very interested seeing how the whisky turns out 🙂 #CountryKids

    Reply
  12. Samantha Free

    We were talking about this the other day as I saw something that looked vaguely like it but didn’t think it was, and like you say lots of things can be confused with it. Excellent identification tips though, thank you! I heard you didn’t need much to make cordial – is that true? I would be very interested seeing how the whisky turns out 🙂

    Reply
  13. Maria

    That is definitely something I’d like to learn more about too. I had some elderflower champagne once and it was absolutely amazing! You should give it a go next 😉 #countrykids

    Reply

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