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**This post has been entered in Monday Mania at The Healthy Home Economist!**
Elderberry syrup is awesome stuff. If you haven’t seen it yet, it’s on my list of Ways to Prevent Colds and Flu this winter. I simply love it. (Along with fermented cod liver oil; more on that next week.) Unfortunately, if you buy the syrup from the store it comes with a very high price tag — $15 for about 4 oz. of syrup is typical. Many brands also have flavors, colors, and sweeteners added to them. Not exactly what I like in my medicine, how about you?
Luckily, elderberry syrup is easy to prepare and quite cheap, too. I figured my cost was only about $5 for nearly a quart of syrup.
You will need:
- 1 cup dried elderberries (about 1/4 lb.) — You can buy these at Mountain Rose Herbs
- 4 cups filtered water
- 1 cup raw honey
- 2 tbsp. fresh grated ginger (optional)
- A 1-qt. mason jar with lid
First, gather all your supplies:
Measure the elderberries (just enough!):
Add the elderberries and the water to a medium saucepan (and ginger, if using):
Now, turn the pan on medium-high heat:
When it starts to boil, let it cook for 2 – 3 minutes. Then, turn it off. Let it sit, steaming and steeping, for about 10 – 15 min.:
Strain the juice into a mason jar, pressing the berries to get all the healthy, yummy goodness out:
Now, let it cool until it is about room temperature, then add the honey. If you don’t wait until it’s cool, you’ll kill all the beneficial enzymes in the raw honey, which are excellent for helping while sick too!
Stir or shake the jar to combine, then refrigerate. Done! You now have elderberry syrup.
If you’re wondering, most people recommend using equal amounts of juice and honey to create a syrup. It may last a little longer if you do this. However, if you’re going to finish it in 4 – 6 weeks, you only need a little honey to sweeten it. I’ve found that 1 part honey to 2 – 3 parts juice works just fine, and saves some money on the raw honey. This does need to be refrigerated!
There you go! A simple, 20-minute task (and most if it is wait time).
Do you make or use elderberry? Do you find that it helps?
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