Tis the season to harvest the elderberries. I never stop being in awe at how perfect the Creators timing is in bringing us the harvest of just the right things at just the right time. As the summer fades and the autumn weather moves in, the elderberries ripen into a gorgeous deep purple berry dancing on a vibrant pink stem. The elderberry bush is truly a treasure, and has been used as medicine for 100s of years. If you are interested in more information about growing, harvesting, and storing elderberries, I have a blog post here:
This recipe will make approx. 1 quart or 4 cups (32oz) of homemade elderberry syrup.
7 cups purified water (reduces to about half)
1 and 1/3 cup dried elderberries (If fresh or frozen 2 cups) * fresh European elderberries, uncooked, should be eaten with caution*
1 Tablespoon Dried or Freshly Grated Ginger (1/4 tablespoon if ground)
1 Tablespoon Dried Clove or Whole Cloves (1/4 tablespoon if ground)
Raw Honey (We use 2 Tablespoons for this amount)
Optional: Rosehips for vitamin C, other medicinal herbs such as thyme or mullein, or lemon and orange zest.
Recipe for elderberry sunshine syrup here: https://www.ourlittlehouseonthemountain.com/post/rosehip-elderberry-sunshine-syrup
Pour the water into a saucepan or pot and add the elderberries and whatever add ons you choose, such as, ginger, cinnamon, and cloves. Bring to a boil and then quickly reduce to a simmer and cover the pot for about 45 minutes to 1 hour until the liquid has reduced by almost half. Check the liquid every 10 minutes to make sure it is not boiling or cooking too aggressively.
Remove from heat and let cool until it is cool enough to be handled.
Mash the berries carefully using a spoon or other flat utensil. (they will stain your skin)
Pour through a strainer into a glass jar or bowl.
Let the liquid cool to lukewarm, and then add the honey to taste and stir well.
When the honey is well mixed into the elderberry mixture, pour the syrup into a mason jar.
Store in the fridge and take every other day or as needed for its immune boosting properties.
Please note we are NOT medical professionals and this is merely a suggestion
Standard dose is ½ - 1 teaspoon for kids and ½ - 1 tablespoon for adults. If the flu does strike, take the normal dose every 2-3 hours instead of once a day until symptoms disappear.
If made properly, this syrup can last in the fridge approx. 3 months.
If there are certain spices that you do not have, simply omit that from the recipe. The spices are health boosting, but not necessary to create delicious elderberry syrup.
*Homemade and fridge-stored elderberry syrup is safe to use for six months. In the case of store-brought elderberry products, consider the instructions. To make sure nothing’s gone wrong with the syrup, always check for mold. If you’ve been keeping it for a few months, it helps to do a quick scent and taste test before consuming it.*