The humble elderberry is well known for its many health benefits, particularly in helping to maintain healthy functioning Immune system and prevent common colds and flues in winter.
People as early as the Stone age and Bronze age era were aware of its benefits, as the seeds of the elderberry plant were found at prehistoric sites.
Below is our favorite Elderberry Syrup recipe. It is easy to make and so tasty that even children love it!
It will make about 3 cups of syrup without alcohol and 4 cups with alcohol. You can also substitute the elderberries for bilberries or mix the two if you want to make up the quantity.
Bilberries or blueberries are beneficial to your eye health.
This syrup will make you about an hour to make.
4 cups fresh elderberries (or 2 cups dried)
4 cups cold water (filtered)
2-3 tsp. dried or fresh ginger
1 cinnamon stick
1 cup raw, local honey (or organic maple syrup or agave for a vegan/infant-friendly recipe); double the amount of sweetener to increase shelf life
1 cup vodka or brandy (optional to increase shelf life)
- Combine berries and spices with cold water in a pot and bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat and allow to simmer 30 to 40 min. (syrup should reduce by ⅓)
- Remove from heat and let it soak for 1 hour.
- Mash mixture to get the most goodness out of the berries
- Strain using a funnel or a strainer and doubled cheesecloth or undyed cotton muslin bag and squeeze out liquid (careful, liquid can still be hot!). Discard the pulp in compost.
- Once liquid has cooled to just above room temperature, add honey and stir to incorporate.
- If using vodka or brandy, add here and stir until well combined.
- Bottle in sterilized glass jar.
Store in the fridge for up to 6 months and enjoy 1 to 2 spoons a day on its own or on your porridge.