If you haven’t tried any beverage with elderflowers, you should.
Up until I tried this lemonade, I thought it seemed odd. Who adds flowers to lemonade? And yet, after tasting it, I wondered why they weren’t added more to drinks and even desserts. It’s tart, sweet, and fragrant…especially the one with the rose extract or syrup added. It’s definitely the kind of drink you would serve at a bridal shower or some other special occasion.
It’s not exactly found at Acme or any other typical grocery store, but it’s freaking delicious if you can find it. So far, I’ve only ever found it at The Fresh Market, a higher end kind of grocery store in the suburbs. This particular brand from Belvoir Fruit Farms is imported from England, which explains it’s limited availability here in the states. Actually, Europe as a whole is more familiar with elderflower and its uses in beverages. It should be everywhere, frankly. It’s not only delicious, but also good for you health!
As much as I love this lemonade, though, I can’t always buy it. So I started looking into making it myself at home. I’ve found that the key ingredient to any elderflower beverage is elderflower fruit syrup. Adding it to water, club soda, lemonade, tea, and even wine transforms it into a “fancy”, floral drink immediately. If you’ve ever worked with rose extract or dried lavendar, you know that a little goes a really long way if you’re thinking of using dried elderflowers. But I like convenience as much as authenticity, so I prefer the syrup. It takes out the guesswork, especially considering the bark, leaves, and stems of the plant itself are toxic.
It should come as no surprise that there are some pretty sweet benefits to consuming elderflowers and elderberries. They’ve been used in home remedies for asthma, colds, congestion, toothaches, acne, and general detoxing for centuries. They’re rich in vitamins C, B, and A and even contain those flavonoids I mentioned in my posts about dark chocolate. In fact, it may be an interesting experiment to make dark chocolate elderflower tea! That would be a health bomb if I can strike the right balance of ingredients…ohh the gears are grindin’!!