Lyndell Goolsby's - Elderberry Syrup

December 31, 2022 • 0 comments

My ELDERBERRIES are ripe!  I wanted to harvest them before the birds did, but I’ve never processed elderberries before, so I had to do some homework first.  The most promising-looking online recipe used ginger, cinnamon, and cloves – all my favorites!We took scissors, a ladder (for those high, hard to reach branches), and an ice chest into the field, along with our riding mower to trim back the verge! Cutting the whole berry umbels off, we placed them in the ice chest and went back for more. Soon the chest was filled to overflowing.  Some berries will have to wait for another day.  At home, we put the whole chest into a freezer; more from sheer laziness rather than any other reason.  But it turned out well, because in a couple of days, when I was ready to process, they were frozen solid and the ice chest kept the berries cold while I easily stripped them off the umbels with my (very cold!) fingers, just dropping them to the bottom of the chest.  ElderberryWhen all the berries were off, and the large twigs removed, I poured the berries, small twigs and all, into a two-gallon thick-bottomed pot and turned it on low.  As the berries began to heat, I smashed them against the side of the pot with a spoon, and turned up the heat to medium.  Adding grated ginger root, powdered cinnamon and clove, I let it not-quite-simmer for about 30 minutes, continuing to stir and smash the berries every so often.Next, using a two-cup measuring cup, I scooped the whole mess int   o my fruit press to remove the pulp, and returning the juice back to a clean pot. (I fed the pulp to the chickens!) When lukewarm, I added raw honey and stirred thoroughly.  Pouring through a mesh strainer into clean bottles, I lidded, labeled, and refrigerated my creation.


Here’s the recipe I followed (sort of, since I had fresh berries, I omitted the water):

3 ½ cups water

2/3 cup dried elderberries (1-1/3 fresh or frozen)

2 Tbsp ginger (grated)

1 tsp ground cinnamon

½ tsp ground cloves

1 cup raw honey (or maple syrup)

  1. Place water, dried berries, ginger, cinnamon and cloves into a saucepan.
  2. Bring to boil and reduce to simmer for 45 – 60 minutes, until liquid is reduced by almost half.
  3. Remove from heat and let cool until it is cool enough to handle. Mash the berries carefully.
  4. Pour through a strainer into jar or bowl. Add the honey and mix well. Lid securely and store in the fridge.

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