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Rose Hip Syrup Recipe

March 30, 2020
Making our wild rose syrup is a multi-step process worth every bit of effort. The syrup is delicious, soothing and rich in nutrients like vitamin-C. We love to get out in nature to harvest our own hips from summer through fall, but buying hips still makes for a delicious syrup. Just be sure to purchase food-grade, not decorative, rose hips.

Rose Hips

Luscious hand-harvested wild rose hips for syrup

If you use hips you harvest on your own, select only wild hips growing in places where road run-off, spraying and other nastiness won’t contaminate your crop. Pick when the hips are deep red and slightly soft. Ideally, pick them after a first frost. But, some varieties of rose hip will go bad by the time a frost comes. So, for instance, we harvest wild Rosa rugosa, a non-native species with enormous, sweet fruits, in late summer. That’s when they’re at their peak! Later in autumn, we gather Nootka rose hips from our property. If they’re ripe but we haven’t had a frost, freezing them before processing them, brings out an extra bit of deliciousness.

Also, if you’re working with whole rose hips (purchased or self-picked), be sure to fully strain out all of the tiny hairs. These can cause serious internal aggravation and must be removed. It is labor intensive to remove the seeds and hairs from fresh fruits, but we find it worthwhile to do this before drying most of our wild harvest. Most of these hips we use as “chips” in teas. We freeze whole hips for recipes like the syrup that follows. Then, we carefully strain the solids through a cloth jelly bag or paper coffee filter to capture and compost the hairs.

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Wild Rose Hip Syrup Recipe Print Print

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb fresh or frozen & defrosted, clean wild rose hips (or 1 oz dried rose hips)
  • 6 cups water
  • Juice of 1-2 lemons, fresh
  • Raw honey (about 12 oz)

Bring 3 cups of water to a boil. Pour over rose hips. Return to a boil, covered. Remove from heat and allow to steep, covered for 30-45 minutes.

Wet a basket coffee filter. Place in a mesh strainer over a large bowl. (Or prepare a jelly bag strainer over a bowl.)

Pour the steeped rose hips into your coffee filter or jelly bag strainer. Allow to drain. Set liquid aside. Do NOT discard hips.

Bring another 3 cups of water to a boil. Pour over the same rose hips. Return to a boil, covered. Remove from heat and allow to steep, covered for 30-45 minutes. (Yep, again. This isn’t a typo!)

Wet a basket coffee filter. Place in a mesh strainer over a large bowl. (Or prepare a jelly bag strainer over a bowl.)

Pour the steeped rose hips into your coffee filter or jelly bag strainer. Allow to drain.

Discard the rose solids.

Combine the liquid from both times you steeped the rose hips into a sauce pan. (You may wish to run this through another wet coffee filter strainer if you think there’s any chance any of those nasty rose hip hairs are in your rose hip liquid.)

Measure the approximate volume of liquid. Bring to a simmer, not a boil, and allow to simmer and steam until the volume is reduced by about half.

Remove from heat and allow to cool until just barely warm. (Cooling it to below 110F is ideal so your honey doesn’t degrade and lose its great properties.) Measure how many cups of rose hip water decoction you have. Then add 4 oz honey for every cup of rose hip “water”.

(You’ll probably have about 3 cups of rose hip water, which means add about 12 oz honey.)

Stir in strained fresh lemon juice to taste.

Bottle and place in fridge. Ours keeps about 1-3 months refrigerated, but every fridge and kitchen is different.

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