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Archive for the ‘Elderflower’ Category

Elderflower Champagne & R&O Wine

Posted by --- on Sunday 8 July, 2012

Elderflower Champagne day 2

I was going to make elderflower champagne following the post from here but decided to try this one instead.
  • Ingredients
    • 6 large heads of elder flowers – make sure that they are fully open, preferably facing the Sun
    • 1.2kg of sugar
    • 2 lemons
    • 4 tablespoons of white wine vinegar
    • 10 litres of cold water

How I made elderflower champagne

  1. After the very wet year we’ve had so far, I couldn’t be choosy about my flowers; they had started to drop, a few were turning brown and they were picked early yesterday evening between rain storms
  2. The flowers were placed in a saucepan late last night and 8 pints of water was poured over them. 2 lemons sliced were added
  3. This was covered and left 24 hours
  4. Tonight, I’ve transferred the must to a 10l fermenting bucket, the white wine vinegar added and then the bucket topped up with water to 10l under the tap
  5. 1.2kg sugar was added and everything stirred until the sugar was completely dissolved.
  6. The SG read 1044 at 23oC. The actual SG according to the calculators here is 1046. If I can stop the fermentation at around 1000, it should have an alcohol content of 6.1%. I assume that there will be an icrease to this figure when I prime the bottles but I’m not sure how to calculate that yet (I will have to update my post if I find out…)
  7. I placed the lid back on the bucket and will stir it regularly over the next 24 hours and wait to see little bubbles. If no bubbles have appeared by Tuesday morning I will add  yeast and some nutrient. From then I will leave it a week and then strain it into a couple of demijohns (or plastic water bottles) and leave it to ferment for a week or two until its hit 1000 but before it clears too much. Then I will syphon it onto primed 2l bottles at the rate of 1/2 tsp sugar per 1l if it’s 1000 as discussed in this thread or 1tsp if it’s 990. The again following the suggestion in the thread, I’ll leave it in a warm place for a fortnight before storing (horizontally) in the cold.
9/7/12 – no sign of fermetation so I added a tsp youngs wine yeast compound but left the must in the bucket
10/7/12 – the lid of the bucket is bulging this morning showing signs of fermenting.

Rhubarb and Orange day 2

8/7/12

I strained the rhubarb and orange fruit juice to a demijohn.To get as much juice as possible I put it into a colander and pressed it out into a bucket first but it didn’t go well and the colander kept falling in the bucket! What I extracted I put into a demijohn and topped up with water to the shoulder of the demijohn. I then added 2 tsp of pectolase. I think I should have added the pectolase before now; probably with the fruit after I’d added the sugar as the pectolase breaks down the cell structure and helps to extract more juice as well as helping the final wine to clear by reducing the risk of a pectin haze.

I will now leave it in the kitchen for 24 hrs before adding the yeast.

The SG (temp corrected) is 1086 so at 1010 (medium dry) the ABV should be 10.1% . Oh and it tastes lovely already!

Posted in Brewing, Elderflower, Rhubarb, Wine making | Leave a Comment »

Elderflower Wine

Posted by --- on Saturday 7 July, 2012

I know it’s late this year but the weather has really thrown me out. In a dry hour today me, DSK and DDi went to get a bag of flowers. Our normal picking spot was disappointing with only a few flowers and lots of nettles (should have took gloves!) but I spotted a few huge bushes by the park nearby. With odd looks from passing dog walkers we grabbed about 30 heads. Tonight I’ve put 6 in a gallon of water with 1 1/2 sliced lemons ready for champagne and a pint of flowers in 4 pints of boiling water waiting until I go and get some raisins tommorow which I thought I had. I’ve not had much luck with the elderflower recipes over the years; the river cottage recipe exploded the glass bottles and put holes in the roof of the verandah! Its a good job no one was close. . My elder wine tasted horrible as I said most of my wine does. I did make a wicked cordial one year but last years went into the freezer but wouldn’t freeze so went in the bin months later. I don’t know why I’m bothering! Here is this years recipe for wine

Elderflower Wine     
  • 1 pt elder flowers
  • 250gms of chopped raisins
  • juice and rind from 2 lemons
  • 8 pints of boiling water
  • 2 Campden Tablets
  • 2lb of sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of Wine Tannin
  • yeast and yeast nutrient
Method

  1. Gather the elderflowers on a sunny day (hah! NOT IN 2012…) when you can smell the distinctive aroma of the flowers. Separate the flowers from their storks by pulling through fingers or cutting with scissors. 
  2. Add chopped raisins and the rind from  lemons to the petals in a clean plastic bucket and pour over boiling water.
  3. Allow to cool and add 1 campden tablet. 
  4. Cover with a clean cloth and allow to stand for 3 days stirring occasionally. 
  5. Add sugar and stir well until all the sugar is dissolved
  6. Add lemon juice, tannin, yeast and yeast nutrient
  7. Strain through a fine mesh bag or muslin into a 1 gal fermenting vessel or demijohn. 
  8. Fit an air lock and leave the vessel in a warm place about 20-22deg C for about 5 days. 
  9. Strain the liquid off again into another clean fermenting vessel and add another campden tablet. 
  10. Leave until the fermentation is finished. This will be when the S.G. is near 1.000 (if using a hydrometer) or when the bubbles no longer pass through the air lock. 
Gradually the wine will clear and after about 8 weeks it should be ready to syphon into bottles.
It is best to leave for about another 6 months before drinking.
my method
add flowers and rind of 1 1/2 lemons to bucket, pour over 4pts of boiling water meaning to buy raisins the next morning! Forget all about raisins..
09/07/12 @ 23:15.
30 hours later send son to shop for raisins. 48 hours later add 200g of chopped sultanas that son bought instead to flowers. add 4 pts boiling water and stir. cover with a clean towel and leave overnight to cool
Have hectic few days so forget about wine again…
13/07/12  @ 11:25
add 1 small cup of strong black tea plus 1kg sugar and stir to dissolve. pour through seive into demijonhn. when half full, add 1 tsp wilko yeast nutrient and youngs wine yeast compound. top up to shoulders and put a bung and airlock on the demihohn. place in unheated utility room. SG 1086 temp 19oC

Posted in Brewing, Elderflower, Wine making | Leave a Comment »