When I was in my early teens, on a Sunday, we would, on occasions, have Elderflower Champagne with our Sunday lunch. And did I feel decadent. It didn’t matter that it is non-alcoholic.
My dad was into homemade wines and beer. But it was of no interest to me as I was only allowed the very infrequent taste. What I did like was the “champagne”.
Our family Sunday’s had a very regular pattern. My big sister and I would play out in the morning, which could mean scrambling about in the fields, climbing the best oak tree ever, or riding out on our pony. As I got older, I became friends with a girl who kept a horse down the lane, she was older than me and more experienced, and made me feel very grown up. We would go for rides around the lanes, usually going too far and often getting lost. Even taking a map with us didn’t help.
We always managed to find our way home and I only remember being anxious once that we were not going to.
But however much fun we had, lunch was at 2 so be home for then!
It was traditional Sunday lunch, which my mum would have prepared herself, with home grown vegetables, and a roast of some sort followed by pudding. We; mum, dad and my big sister sat at the dinning table, and if we were lucky out would come the champagne.
My dad took his brewing duties very seriously, and he would have decanted the drink into proper champagne bottles, with corks and wire to hold the cork in. We still have dints in the ceiling from the blow of a flying cork.
I use the same recipe, but am not as glamorous and usually put the chamagne into plastic lemonade or tonic bottles. No cork or dints in ceilings.
1 gallon of cold water 1 1/2 lb of sugar 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar Juice of 1 lemon 4 florrets of elderflowers
Oh I love simplicity:. Put all the ingredients into a large bowl and stir until the sugar is disolved Cover with a clean cloth and leave for 24 hours Strain and place into bottles. Drink after 10 days!
Ta Dah……….. Simple yet sublime.
This is a great thing to have in store for a special occasions where one of the party cannot drink alcohol, drinking this will make them feel really included.