Saturday, November 14
This is the easiest 'fizz' Ive ever made. Its the fizz that Hugh serves up a River Cottage HQ. Watching his wine making efforts we have often shouted at the screen..'that's not wine' that's beer' but its so much less time consuming than a complex wine, so Im giving it a shot. A solo Gnome dropped some fragrant, voluptuous elderflowers at our house this week, intended initially for elderflower fritters, but the weather..ohhh the weather! a record heat wave in spring is not conducive to fritters, so by Friday the flowers were really stressing me out; brought all this way and still sitting in the fridge, wilting a little, looking a tad less glorious and no end to the heat in sight. Whadddaya do?...make wine.
4 litres of hot water and 700g of dissolved sugar later, the elderflowers (about 13 heads) were bathing in a demi-john (a clean bucket will do) alongside the rind and juice of four lemons and 2 tablespoons of rice wine vinegar (the recipe called for white wine vinegar but we had none) and a 2 litre top-up of cold water. Too easy. This will sit for a few days, covered with muslin, then the yeast checked, (if not fermenting by then, a tablespoon of regular bakers yeast will be added) and eitherway, left to sit again for a few more before being strained and bottled up in swing top bottles. Easy huh? If you've got some elderflowers to hand give it a try, just be prepared for the potential explosions! Ive read that storing the fizz under a heavy cloth works a treat.