Sambucus nigra is a versatile plant that can be eaten from root to tip. While it’s weedy in certain regions, the berries have great medicinal properties too. To make a long-lasting cordial, mash 2kg elderberries in a large glass jar with a wooden spoon. Add 1 cup sugar and mix. Pour over 3 cups vodka (or a mix of vodka and brandy) and 2 tablespoons lemon juice. Close lid and shake, then store in a cool room out of sunlight for 4-6 weeks. Strain and store for another 4 weeks to mellow. Strain again then pour into sterilised bottles. When a cold threatens, take 1 teaspoon 3 times a day. Dilute in warm water if you prefer.