The Elderberries are ripe. Earlier this week, I spent a little time wading up the creek to harvest some of this native fruit that grows so well creekside. My intention with this first round of harvesting was to make a cold and flu tonic for the seasons ahead when we find ourselves spending more time indoors and when the snot and crud lurk about more. I’ve been looking for good recipes for a time (remember way back when in this discussion), and a friend just forwarded a link to an elderberry tonic that jived with my desires. Finally. A kid-friendly flu tonic (no moonshine necessary) that is incredibly simple to make and uses ingredients I always keep on hand. And with ripe elderberries for the picking, tonic-making time is now…
This recipe comes from The Herb Geek. (There are all sorts of worthy recipes to be found there!) The only tweaking I did was to exclude the thyme, simply because I don’t have it right now, and instead stuck in a couple of sprigs of rosemary to give a little herbal essence. And I was using fresh elderberries instead of dried, and I had plenty, so I doubled the amount. I also noticed the volume of apple cider vinegar was a little vague: the recipe called for a “jar” of apple cider vinegar. I buy mine by the gallon, not the jar. (Can’t wait to make my own someday, by the barrel!) So my assumption is that a “jar” of cider vinegar is roughly a quart. Anyhow, that’s what I went with. Here’s the deal:
Raw apple cider vinegar, one quart
Raw (local is best) honey, one cup
Elderberries, dried (one cup) or fresh (two cups)
1/4 cup dried thyme leaves (what I say is: use what you have!)
There you have it. Enjoy!