It makes me happy to think of people I love when I’m making certain recipes or using certain spoons or filling certain bowls. I remember the person who passed on the recipe, or gifted the spoon, or handed down the mixing bowl. Lately, I’ve been thinking about certain people a lot, given what’s going on in my kitchen. I like this.
I was running low on elderberry syrup (it’s great for boosting immunity) so, yesterday, I got out the ingredients to make some. You can find lots of recipes online but I use one that my sister passed on to me a few years ago. As part of her Christmas gift one year, she gave me a little kit with everything I needed to make elderberry syrup. It was one of my favorite gifts that year. And the gift keeps on giving because I can buy the ingredients and whip up new batches anytime I like. The whole teach a man (or woman) to fish thing.
Now I have a jar of elderberry syrup in the refrigerator. And a happy heart, having felt connected to my sister in the measuring and stirring.
Maybe you’d like to make some elderberry syrup too??
Here’s what you need:
4 cups water
1 cup dried elderberries (I like to order mine from Mountain Rose Herbs, but buy where you like)
1 tsp dried ginger (or feel free to use fresh ginger that’s grated or minced)
6 whole cloves (you’ll see 7 in the photo above) (sometimes I like to live on the edge)
2 cinnamon sticks
1 cup honey
Here’s what you do first:
Bring all ingredients (except honey!!!) to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer about 30 minutes, stirring every once in a while. After about 30 minutes, liquid will have reduced by about half. Remove from heat and let it cool (keep in mind that it’ll be easier to stir in the honey if the syrup is still a bit warm; you just don’t want it hot for the next step).
Here’s what you do next:
Pour mixture into a bowl through a strainer that’s lined with a double layer of unbleached cheesecloth. Remove cinnamon sticks. Mash the berries a bit with a spoon. Then gather corners of cheesecloth and twist/squeeze to get most of the juice into your bowl (this part’s messy). Discard berries in the trash. My sister assures me that asking your kitchen sink disposal to take care of this is not a good idea, ahem. You can wash the cheesecloth and save it for reuse. You’ll need to wash your purple hands for reuse too.
Stir in honey and pour your syrup into a clean, glass jar. Store in refrigerator.
Mason jars are great, but last year I bought a nice amber one like this. The jury’s still out but I think I might actually prefer the wide mouth of a mason jar.
Adults – 1 tablespoon || Children – 1 teaspoon
Take once daily as a preventative, every 2-3 hours during illness.
If you make this, maybe you’ll think warm thoughts of me.
I’d like that.
Sending a little love your way, m
P.S. Those links above are not affiliate links. I’m just sharing them because I like the company and maybe you will too.
P.P.S. I did a search on making elderberry syrup and saw a version that uses an instant pot. I know people are busy, but seriously, some things aren’t meant to be done in a jiffy. Use the stovetop, friends. While it’s simmering, read a book, sip some tea, talk to a friend or loved one. Please don’t make this in an instant.