Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Elderberry Syrup

Elderberry Syrup has long been used for its antibiotic properties.  My children take it daily as a vitamin and immune builder.

Makes 1 quart (1l)

Make sure the cookware you’re using is non-reactive and your clothes are stain-friendly. If you use an aluminum pot, it’ll get stained and the next batch of mashed potatoes you make may come out pink. Ditto for spatulas and anything else to plan to use to stir the syrup while it’s cooking.

2-pounds (1kg) elderberries (order from http://www.rosemountainherbs.com/)
4 cups (1l) water

1/4-1/2 raw honey, to taste (we sell raw wildflower honey at http://www.vineyardfarms.com/)

1. Put the elderberries in a large, non-reactive pot with the water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a low boil and cook for 15-20 minutes, until tender and soft.

2.  Strain juice into a mason jar, over a fine mesh strainer.  Pushing the mosture out with the back of a spoon.  Save strained berries.

3.  Add honey to taste into the mason jar with the warm elderberry syrup.  Stir.

4.  Store in refrigerator for up to 1 year.  If syrup ever molds, scrape mold off, and re-boil.  I have never had mine mold, but have read that it has happened to some people. 

5. Give 1 teaspoon twice a day as an immune system supplement.  If used to combat active flu symptoms, give 1 teaspoon every couple of hours.  Do not give elderberry syrup to children under one, if you have added honey to it.

6.  Roll the strained berries in 2 tsps flour and 2 tsps sugar.  Use in blueberry muffins.

Note: Some varieties of elderberries are not meant for consumption and none should be eaten raw, especially the leaves. I remove all of the hard, woody stems as well before cooking.  You can Google "Elderberry Syrup" for all the health benefits and for more info.