I have a best friend. Her name is Rachael (@lavenderandvanilla). Some people might think I stalk her because I mention her so much on my blog. These people are right. I do stalk her. I learn so much about homeopathy, naturopathy, aromatherapy, health, faith, parenting, generosity, fashion, deal hunting, cooking, party planning … the list goes on and on … that it is only natural to have a thread of her life woven throughout my blog.
On my most recent visit south of the border, she taught me how to make homemade elderberry syrup. I could not believe how easy it was! DIYing often scares me because I feel like I have to buy large quantities of supplies I may never use again, I might spend years in the kitchen (my least favourite place in the world unless baking), and let’s face it, project failure.
But, take heart – this is not one of those DIYing. It is one of these DIYing.
(To read more on the dosage, usage and benefits of elderberries, scroll past recipe.)
Photo credit: A special thanks to The Fox Fellow!
- 2/3 cup dried organic elderberries(Community Natural Foods, Amazon.com, Amazon.ca)
- ¼ cup Double-E immune booster (Bulk Herb Store, optional)
- 3 ½ cups of water
- 2 tbsp fresh or dried ginger root
- 1 tsp cinnamon powder
- 1/2 tsp whole cloves or clove powder
- 1 cup raw honey (I found this too sweet. I would probably use ½ cup)
- Measure all ingredients.
- Pour water into your favourite pot (we tried to use Rachael’s lovely yellow Staub saucepan, but we tripled the batch and therefore had to use a less desirable, but equally functional, pot).
- Add elderberries, Double-E immune booster, ginger, cinnamon and cloves.
- Do not add honey as the heat can destroy the honey’s oh-so-amazing health benefits!
- Bring the berry and spice mixture to a boil. Reduce heat and let simmer for 45-60 minutes until the concoction has been reduced to (about) half.
- Strain to remove berries. Allow liquid to cool to room temperature. NOW, you can add the honey goodness! (Stir well.)
- Take a clean spoon, and take your first adult dose ( ½ tbsp. – 1 tbsp) of your homemade elderberry syrup. (It doesn’t taste like medicine at all. It tastes like Christmas in a spoon).
- Pour the syrup into a glass jar or a few little jars or you can buy your own glass medicine bottles and create your own “Elderberry Syrup” labels if you’re feeling inspired. (Not the case with me. Left over jar and my ghetto label maker is all I had time for.)
- Shelf life: a batch can last a few months in the refrigerator.
During cold and flu season (a.k.a. 8 months out of 12 in Canada), children and adults can boost the immune system with a daily dose. During illness, amp up the frequency to every 2-3 hours.
Toddler: • ½ tsp Kids: • ½ tsp to 1 tsp Adults: • ½ tbsp to 1 tbsp
- Supports the immune system (more info)
- Reduces cold and flu symptom
- High vitamin C, Vitamin A and quercitin (antioxidant)
- Relieve nasal and sinus congestion
If you have any questions, feel free to contact me!