Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Fighting flu season

This is the part where I say that I am not a doctor or medical physician of any kind, I am just a mother informing herself and passing along the information I find for you to process and make your own informed decisions with.
Don't replace good quality health care with my recipe just because I said that I read it has health benefits. Inform yourself, discuss it with your healthcare practitioner (whoever that may be) and make YOUR OWN decisions based on that, like a responsible adult. I accept no responsibility for what you do with the below recipe.

Last winter while heavily pregnant, I spent 3 months caring for a sick family.
Mr HomesteadingHippy works in an environment where he travels and is exposed to other fluey virus cell shedding people on a daily basis. So last year he brought home a new flu EVERY ROTATION.
With winter once again on it's way and flu season inevitably around the corner, I wanted to be prepared.

I've read about elderberry benefits before, planned for a shrub or two, fantasised about making syrup one day, but never really made much of an effort of doing much more than that just yet.
Until now.

Last week, I excitedly opened a package of dried organic elderberries, grabbed some honey and spices from the cupboard and prepared to make my first batch of syrup.

Here's my adjuted recipe based on a variety of diferent recipes across the internet. They're all pretty similar, so you could google around yourself and come up with a slight twist of your own if you're daring.

Homesteading Elderberry Syrup.
1/2 cup dried elderberries or 1 cup fresh RIPE elderberries (no stems though, they're poisonous. ONLY RIPE BERRIES should be used)
3 cups water
1/2 cup honey
1 cinnamon stick
15 cloves (this is very clovey, just the way I like it but you can use as little as 5 instead if you like)

Place all in a pot, except for the honey and bring to the boil.
Reduce heat and simmer for 45 minutes.
Remove from heat, strain through muslin and squeeze all the wonderful flavour
Cool slightly and stir in honey while still very warm.
Bottle and label.
This recipe made around 250ml give or take when reduced.

We use this at the dosage of:
1 teaspoon daily for prevention and 1 tspn every waking hour for treatment of the kids (not suitable for under 1's due to the honey) and
1 Tablespoon daily for prevention and 1 tablespoon every waking hour for treatment for the adults.

This syrup isn't overly sweet, nor is it unpleasant. The kids quite happily take theirs with no complaint.
I even tried adding a little extra oomph to our adult bottle of elderberry syrup, with a few drops of Four Thieves Oil.
I might only use two drops next time, maybe even one.

No comments:

Post a Comment