If you're unfamiliar with elderberry prepare to be remarked by its incredible medicinal power. Elderberry has a long history of use to promote health and combat sickness, particularly during the winter months. It has tremendrous immune boosting anti-viral properties, which are proven to help you prevent or beat sickness quickly. Why you may ask? Rather than suppressing your immune responses, like standard over-the-counter medicines, Elderberry supports your immune system's responses to pathogens helping to rev up your bodies natural healing responses. Believe it or not, fevers, chills, runny noses, sweating, etc are our body's way of combating sickness. When we use suppressants that minimize or eliminate these responses we prolong, and in ways hinder, our healing. Not to mention, while over-the-counter medications are government regulated, this doesn't necessarily make them safe to use or mean they are kind to our bodies.
So in steps natural medicinal remedies. Black elderberries, which are used to make this popular syrup, are packed with vitamins a, c, and b6, potassium, iron, and lots of potassium plus it is filled with flavonoids and antioxidants. It also boast properties that helps shrink mucus membranes and combat sinus infections, such as sinusitis. These benefits and more are all bioavailable and void of any harmful side effects.
The recipe you'll find below features organic black elderberries, local raw unfiltered honey, and warming spices. The honey in this recipe is as key as the berries, because honey carries several medicinal and healing properties of its own. Thus finding the highest quality honey available to you is key. This elderberry syrup is great to use as a preventative during the winter months or to combat sickness at anytime. To provide preventative immune support take a tablespoon daily for adults, 1/2 teaspoon for children, or 1/4 teaspoon for toddlers. When combating sickness double this dosage, taking it once in the morning and once in the evening. Although this is "medicine" the great thing about it is you and your children will love it because it taste amazing. Enjoy!
- 1/2 cup dried organic black elderberries
- 1 cup raw local unflitered honey
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 6 cloves
- 1 tablespoon grated ginger root
- 2 cups water
Infuse: Bring water to a boil in a stainless steel pan. Add elderberries and spices to a pint mason jar. Pour boiling water into the jar then place a cap on the jar. Allow mixture to sit for an hour. This process creates an infusion which is a highly concentrated version of tea. Placing the cap on the jar is an essential part of this process, as it keeps the mixture from oxidizing and losing some of its medicinal properties.
Decote: Stain mixture through a fine mesh sieve back into your stainless steel pan. Press the elderberries with the back of a spoon to remove as much of the juices as possible. Turn pan onto medium heat when mixture begins to steam (not boil) turn the mixture down to your lowest setting. Allow the infusion to simmer and reduce by half. This process takes about an hour.
Mix: Allow the decoted mixture to cool slightly then mix in honey until well combined. The mixture should be cool to touch but still warm before completing this step. This is absolutely crucial as you do not want to heat the honey too much causing it to lose aspects of its medicinal properties. Don't kill your honey, honey ;)
Bottle + Store: Transfer syrup to a bottle or jar with a tightly fitted cap. Store in the refrigerator for up to a month. (some versions call for alcohol which allows it to store for longer however I prefer an alcohol-free version for my family plus we use it so quickly it never lasts this long.)