Why Elderberry Syrup?
What the heck is an elderberry, and can I eat it? Elderberries look like tiny dry clusters of blueberries on big, bushy shrubs. The commonly used medicinal varieties are the black and blue species found in North America, Sambucus nigra and Sambucus mexicana. Elderberries are a natural remedy that can boost your immune system, offering broad-spectrum support against a wide range of germs. They're supportive of the lungs, the immune system, and the cardiovascular system. And the tastiest way to take your elderberries is long-simmered into a syrup, with other tasty herbs and spices. Intrigued? Let us guide you through making your own winter kitchen delight! 🍇 🥄
Before you get started, gather the following ingredients:
- 1 bag of DIY Elderberry Syrup
- 8 cups of filtered
- 1 quart of local honey
Follow these simple steps to make your own elderberry syrup:
- Combine the contents of the bag with 8 cups of filtered water. Simmer for 1 hour, or until the water volume has reduced by half. You should have 4 cups of strong tea. Combine 4 cups of tea reduction with 1 quart of honey. Mix well over low heat to combine. Let cool, and jar/bottle in a sterilized glass container. Enjoy! Will keep for 1 year.
Step 1: Simmer the Elderberries & Mushrooms
In a medium-sized saucepan, combine the herbs, berries, mushrooms and water. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat and let it simmer for about an hour. With this step, we are extracting the water-based constituents of the plant and fungi material, like vitamins and polysaccharides that support immune activity. You can simmer for longer than an hour... What you're looking for is the liquid to reduce in volume by half. You should end up with 4 cups of strong tea.
Step 2: Strain Your Brew
Once the elderberries and friends have simmered, use a cloth towel or cheesecloth to gently press the plant material, releasing all the delicious herbal tea. Compost the herbs, or, as we call it in herbalism, the marc.
Step 3: Sweeten with Honey
Remove the saucepan from the heat and let it cool slightly. Once it's cool enough to handle, add the honey and stir until it's fully incorporated. Honey not only adds a touch of sweetness but also acts as a natural preservative for the syrup.
Step 4: Bottle and Store
Pour the elderberry syrup into a clean glass jar or bottle with a tight-fitting lid. Store it in the refrigerator, where it will keep for several months. Remember to label the jar with the date you made the syrup. You should have a half-gallon of this tasty, immune supporting treat!
How to Use Elderberry Syrup
To enjoy the immune-boosting benefits of elderberry syrup, take 1-2 tablespoons daily for adults and 1 teaspoon daily for children. You can take it straight from the spoon or mix it into your favorite beverage or yogurt. If you feel a scratchy throat coming on, increase the dosage to every 2-3 hours until you feel soothed.
Making your own elderberry syrup is super fun and will turn you into the kitchen witch you've always dreamt of being. With just a few simple ingredients and a little bit of time, you can create a potent ally that will help keep you healthy all year round. Get your favorite littles ones involved, helping add the honey and stir! Cheers to your healthy. 🍇 💪 🌱