During the winter months our bodies and those of our little ones can become overwhelmed by cold days, dry heated rooms and longer hours spent indoors. At my house we make Elderberry Syrup as the solution when seeking an antiviral, powerful antioxidant and immune booster. Elderberries are rich in bioflavonoids and high in Vitamin C which put us humans back on track much sooner when facing the flu or a common cold.
My kids and I make the syrup from the dry berries using our trusted recipe as follows:
1/2 cup dried elderberries (can be found at local health food store or online)
3 cups water
2 cups honey (raw honey works great) *for kids under 2 see below.
Take the elderberries and place in saucepan over medium heat. Add water and stir gently. Also be sure to mash the berries while they’re cooking, once the water begins to boil reduce heat and let simmer for 20 mins.
Once cooled I slowly pour the juice into a large bowl that has two cups of honey in it, straining the seeds through a sieve. I then take the remaining elderberries and ladle them onto a thin clean, washcloth and squeeze out whatever juice is left inside. Be sure to squeeze the berries into the same bowl your using – hand strain, squeezing slowly until all the juice comes out.
Once all the juice has been obtained (set seeds aside to compost), begin mixing the honey until blended with the elderberry juice to form the syrup. Take the contents of the now nearly finished product and funnel into at least a quart size mason jar.
Viola! You have now made your very own Elderberry Syrup as a trusty go-to whenever you or the kids are feeling low. During flu or hard-to-kick colds I do a tablespoon as needed and before a cold sets in, I give the children 1 teaspoon 3 times a day. Keep refrigerated.
* For kids under 2 you can omit the honey and replace w/ 1 cup maple or agave syrup. Another option is to add the syrup to hot tea water to kill any microbes.
Elda Mor or the Elder Lady, as she has been referred to in many healing traditions the world over, has been serving her herbal medicine in assistance of those in need since day one, but be sure not to eat the berries of this plant raw.
Enjoy and Happy Healthy times this winter!